UPE school to be attached over Shs17m debt

SEMBABULE. Nsagala Primary School in Mateete Sub-county, Sembabule District, risks being attached over an accumulated debt of Shs17m it owes a contractor.
In 2005, the High Court in Kampala ordered the school to pay Shs17m to Brother Cosmos Nyanzi, which the school has failed to pay to date. Brother Nyanzi has since died.

“We have already secured court orders and are only waiting for the school term to close and we execute them,” Brother Kaloli Byekwaso told this newspaper on Thursday. Brother Byekwaso and Christopher Magunda got Letters of Administration of Brother Nyanzi after his death.
According to Brother Byekwaso, they have for the last 10 years been pressing the school management to clear the debt.
However, the latest development to attach the school has caused mixed reactions among parents of the school, with some appealing to government to pay the contractor to save the community school.
“Where will we take our children when the only nearby school is removed? We ask government to intervene and save our school,” said Mr Bernard Kisolo .

Background
In 1999, Sembabule District local government, under the School Facilities Grant (SFG), contracted Brother Cosmos Nyanzi to construct a four-classroom block at the school, but failed to remit the funds as per the agreement.
According to the contract agreement, the contractor was supposed to do the work in four phases of which the contractor would be paid in installments upon completion of each phase.
However, on failure to access his funds upon completion of the third phase, the contractor stopped the works and demanded payments. Brother Nyanzi sued the school management committee and Sembabule District over breach of contract.

When contacted, Mr Paul Nantumu, the district education officer, said: “They cannot attach the school because it is a public property. We told them to present their bills to our lawyers so that we settle the matter, but they have refused.”
He said the district had earlier deposited all the money on the school account to clear the debt, but the school head teacher at that time, Mr Joseph Kibuuka, used it for other purposes. Mr Kibuuka has since died.
Brother Nyanzi also died in 2001, but his congregation of Bannakaloli Brothers applied for Letters of Administration to pursue the case.
The school has 400 pupils, four classroom blocks and sits on a five-acre land.

editorial@ug.nationmedia.com

SOURCE: Daily Monitor

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