President Yoweri Museveni has asked leaders to emulate him in the fight against corruption, revealing that he has never solicited for a bribe.
The President says this has made him different from the leaders at Uganda had at independence time.
“I have never taken a bribe from anybody in my life or accepted or requested for one. Don’t be tempted when given little trust by not abusing it; you will get bigger trust,” Museveni said.
Museveni made the remarks today during the celebrations of the 21st National Prayer Breakfast that took place at Pearl of Africa Hotel in Kampala with this year’s emphasis put on the power of character in leadership.
The President noted that he has seen a number of people ruin their lives due to corruption, noting that electorates won’t hesitate withdrawing their trust in corrupt leaders.
“You’re given little trust you abuse it, how will you get bigger tryst from God? I have been watching for past 60years how people misuse their chances,” Museveni said.
He added: “I have seen how people have ruined their chances certainly here on earth, don’t know what happens in heaven. Don’t be corrupt, don’t agree to take bribes.”
Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga also castigated leaders who have accumulated wealth, with some having turned it into their beds to consider channeling their ill collected wealth into social development affairs like construction of schools, hospitals.
“Those people who sleep on mattress of cash, most of it ill-gotten may release that wealth for schools, hospital and infrastructure,” she said.
David Bahati, State Minister for Planning, who also doubles as Chairperson organizing committee of the prayer breakfast argued that it was Museveni’s strong character that helped him to lead a force that started with 27 men and taken it to where it is and encouraged all leaders to embrace virtues of integrity.
He urged leaders to repent their social sins like; wealth without work, pleasure without conscience, science without humanity, politics without principles, actions without accountability.
It should be noted that an investigation by America’s Federal Bureau of Investigations – FBI found out that President Museveni received gifts and reelection support from a Chinese company that was seeking to gain business advantage in Uganda.
The deal was reportedly brokered by Foreign Affairs Minister Sam Kutesa, and his wife, Edith Gasana.
Kutesa reportedly sourced the support partly during his tenure as President of the United Nations General Assembly, during a visit to China in 2015 and subsequent correspondences that involved him, his wife and Dr Chi Ping Patrick Ho, the head of China Energy Fund Committee- CEFC, a Hong Kong-based NGO who connected them to the Chinese company.
During the visit to China, reportedly Kutesa held a meeting with an unnamed chairman of the company who promised that they were willing to avail a donation in support of the reelection campaign of the President of Uganda. President Museveni was due to seek another term of office, which he won in elections held in February 2016.
However, the gifts and their financial worth weren’t specified. It is not also clear whether President Museveni personally received the alleged gifts. However, Sam Kutesa is reported to have received a bribe of 500,000 US Dollars– or 1.8 billion Uganda Shillings–for assisting the company to obtain lucrative opportunities in Uganda’s energy sector and connecting them to the President.
Ho has since been convicted of corruption.