Three top jobs at National Information Technology Agency (NITA-U) are on the line after it emerged that the recruitments were made without proper constitution of the board of directors.
These positions include Executive Director, Director e-government and Director National Data Protection.
ChimpReports has learned that despite being appointed Uganda Revenue Authority Commissioner General (URA) in March 2020, Musinguzi Rujoki did not relinquish his position as NITA-U board chairman.
Considering that Rujoki had taken over the leadership of URA, an MDA, which is under regulation of NITA-U from an ICT perspective, Parliament told NITA-U that there was a conflict with him being NITA-U Board Chairman.
Otherwise, how would NITA-U, an independent body, remain objective in its operations involving URA?
Section 5 of the NITA-U Act provides the mandate of NITA-U, which is to “regulate and enforce standards for information technology hardware and software equipment procurement in all Government Ministries, departments, agencies and parastatals.”
On June 30, 2020, Ibrahim Kasozi, the chairman of Committee on Committee on Commissions, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises (COSASE), wrote to the former ICT Minister Judith Nabakooba, warning her of “conflict of interest in NITA-U with relations to the board chairperson role.”
Parliament wondered why Rujoki was still serving on NITA-U board.
“We advise, therefore, that any board decision arrived at since Mr Musinguzi (Rujoki) was appointed to the Commissioner General be set rescinded especially if they were under his chair,” said COSASE.
On the other hand, Section 9(3) of the Uganda Revenue Authority Act requires that the Commissioner General of URA devote his or her full time to the duties of his or her office and shall not engage in any other business, profession, occupation or paid employment elsewhere.
Interestingly, Rujoki didn’t follow the warning of COSASE and continued to chair board meetings that recruited three senior officials hence their placements being at risk.
These officials include Executive Director Hatwib Mugasa who was appointed in July 2020; Stella Alibateese, Director in charge of National Data Protection and the Director of e-government.
We understand Musinguzi’s tour of duty ended on September 1, 2021.
“I take this opportunity to inform you that your request has been accepted effective 1st September, 2021,” ICT Minister, Dr Chris Baryomunsi wrote to Rujoki on August 31.
Officials say Rujoki’s failure to quit the position of board chairperson early enough puts NITA-U in a vulnerable position should any aggrieved person opts for legal action.
“There is tension at NITA-U because any time, anyone can challenge the legality of the recruitment process of the topmost officials,” said a source who preferred anonymity to speak freely.