The Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) has arrested three men, among them a soldier, for impersonating officials of the State House Anti-Corruption Unit and extorting Shs 6 million from a head teacher.
The suspects, who include Pte Onapito Andrew, working with the UPDF Intelligence office for Lango region, were arrested after they arrested Rose Nangwala, the Head Mistress of St Catherine Girls’ School in Lira, accusing her of embezzling Shs 66 million from the school account.
Addressing journalists at her office on Wednesday, Ms Nangwala said the men closed her in her office on March 27 and threatened to parade her before the press if she did not give them money.
“After several minutes of intimidation, they asked me to give them Shs6 million before I can be paraded and ashamed before press that they claimed were remaining in the car. Under duress, I was forced to pull out Shs 6m and handed over to them,” she said.
The head teacher added that after a week, the same group returned and demanded to take a statement from her. She said that is when she developed a second thought and demanded to see their identity cards.
Ms Nangwala said at this time, two of them fled but she managed to lock Pte Onapito in her office and called police. The police then managed to trace the other two using the visitor’s book in the head teacher’s office where they had written their names and phone numbers and arrested them.
Mr David Ongom Mudong, the North Kyoga Regional Police Spokesman, confirmed that after screening, the army took over the matter since it involved UPDF soldiers.
“We arrested the trio and because the army has interest in the matter, they have taken them to Acolpii army barracks in Pader on charges of obtaining money by false pretense. When the army finish up with them, we shall get them back again on charges of aggravated robbery,” Mr Mudong said.
Maj. Telephor Turyamumanya, the 5th Division UPDF spokesman, said the three will soon be arraigned before the army disciplinary court.
“The files are complete, the soldiers’ charges are already done; obtaining money by false pretense, impersonation, exhibiting conducts contrary to good service and discipline as the army dictates,” Turyamumanya said in a telephone interview.