Police Asked to Probe ‘Missing’ Emyoga Funds for Journalists

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Urbanization State Minister and Bukono constituency MP, Persis Namuganza, has called for a police investigation into the alleged misappropriation of Emyoga funds meant for journalists in Namutumba district.

The demand was made during the belated Press Freedom Day celebrations held in Namutumba on Monday morning.

Minister Namuganza’s call for action follows complaints from Joseph Sooka, chairperson of the Namutumba Journalists Association (NAJA), who reported that local leaders had obstructed journalists’ access to their designated Emyoga funds. Despite the district’s three constituencies each being entitled to a journalist’s Emyoga Sacco, the funds had been diverted to other individuals.

Sooka highlighted that Namutumba hosts 50 journalists working for both regional and national media outlets. These journalists had formed two saccos in anticipation of receiving a portion of the 90 million shillings allocated to them. However, they discovered that their funds had been rerouted, and their attempts to audit the fraudsters were met with delays and excuses from district officials.

Minister Namuganza stressed that journalists, like all citizens, deserve access to government support such as Emyoga funds. She criticized the misallocation of these funds, which were intended to enhance journalists’ income and supplement their modest earnings.

Jane Namukuve, Namutumba’s community liaison officer, assured that the matter would be pursued with the institution’s investigative arm to ensure proper accountability.

She acknowledged the critical role journalists play in community mobilization against fraud and emphasized the police’s responsibility to investigate any corruption involving funds earmarked for these “watchdogs.”

Additionally, Minister Namuganza expressed concerns about the infiltration of journalism by saboteurs who engage in blackmail for financial gain, urging vigilance against such practices.

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