Uganda’s Inspector General of Government (IGG) has ordered ordered the suspension of a contract between Lugogo Cricket Oval Managment and Zoe Christian Fellowship.
The suspension is contained in a letter issued by the IGG, Irene Mulyagonja following complaints about the agreement between the two parties.
“This is therefore to direct you with accordance with provisions above to suspend the operation, implementation of the aforementioned contract with Zoe Fellowship Ministries for the use of Lugogo Cricket Oval pending investigation of the circumstances upon which the contract was entered and the management of the proceeds arising therefrome,” the IGG’s letter reads in part.
It adds, “The Inspectrate of Government received a complaint against the National Council of Sports wherein it was alleged that the council was operating in a manner characterized by high handeness and general mismanagement of the affairs of the council. It was specifically alleged that the Lugogo Cricket Oval was irregularly contracted out for use of the Zoe Fellowship Ministries for its massive public prayer rallies much to the detriment and prejudice of the state of the grounds and ultimately the activities of the Uganda Cricket Association which has been in occupation of the Oval since 1966.”
Zoe Ministries is operated by controversial Prophet Elvis Mbonye who holds fellowships every Tuesday at the venue.
The letter further reveals that, “The grounds had been contracted out without due regard to legal requirements for Procurment and disposal of public assets.”
Mbonye previously held his fellowships at Kyadondo Rugby Grounds.
UCA alleges that the implementation of the terms of this contract will stifle the activities of the various cricket teams and make it impossible for them to prepare for the various tornaments because they will retain the use of the ground for only 3 out of 7days of each week for the duration of the contract.
“This will be particularly prejudicial because unlike Zoe Fellowship, which can find another place of worship, cricketers can not play the game in any place of worship or other place because there is none suited to practising for and playing their game,” the IGG’s letter adds.
“It therefore appears that the execution of this contract will not only be unfair to the cricket fraternity, but will also clearly be against public policy.”
It was further alleged that the manner in which the proceeds from such contractual obligations and accounted for is irregular and contrary to the requirements of the Public Finance Management Act and other related legal standards.
In as much as the allegations about the recent contract concerning Lugogo Cricket Oval suggest possible violations of the Law related to disposal of public assets and management of public finances, it is in the public interest that this matter be properly investigated to rule out the possibility of abuse of public assets and finances, the ombudsman says.
The IGG has also vowed to review the processes and procedures of the NCS.
“You are also hereby notified that the Inspectorate of Governemnt will in addition to this particular matter be commencing a systematic review of the processes and procedures of the National Council of Sports on various other matters that have been brought to the attention of this office which will be communicated under separate cover,” she says in the letter.