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HomeActivismMinister orders arrest of two parish chiefs over PDM registration fees

Minister orders arrest of two parish chiefs over PDM registration fees

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The Minister of State for Internal Affairs, Mr Henry Okello Oryem, has ordered the arrest of two leaders accused of extorting money from beneficiaries of the Parish Development Model (PDM).

                                                                                                      State Minister for Foreign Affairs Henry Okello Oryem. PHOTO | FILE.

Two parish chiefs in Puranga and Acholibur sub-counties allegedly collected money from the community for services that are supposed to be free under PDM.

Mr Oryem directed the police and the District Internal Security Officer (DISO) to investigate the matter and ensure the culprits are brought to book.

Mr Milton Odongo, the resident district commissioner (RDC), while addressing stakeholders during the training on PDM at the district headquarters last Thursday, said the locals have embraced the programme.

However, he noted that corruption tendencies might not make the impact of the programme to be felt in Pader.

“In Pader here, as per the intelligence report, parish chiefs and sub-county chiefs  have now resorted to extorting money from groups who are organising themselves to benefit from PDM, a move that has started discouraging people from the programme,” Mr Odongo said.

He said in Puranga Sub-county, Shs30,000 was extorted from a group, which he did not name, while Shs70,000 was allegedly collected from a group in Acholibur Sub-county.

The district councillor for Acholibur, Mr Godwin Wokorach, confirmed the anomalies in the implementation of PDM. He said he had also informed the RDC’s office to take immediate action.

The chairperson of Paco ber Cotton Farmers Group in Wigweng Parish, Acholibur Sub-county, Mr Simon Okot, said even after they paid Shs30,000 for registration, the parish chief rejected their constitution.

The district community development officer, also the focal point person for PDM, Mr Festo Okidi, said the two sub-counties of Acholibur and Puranga had resolved to levy some money for registration of groups under PDM.

Pader District has registered a total of 97 cooperatives under PDM, and each of them received Shs8 million in the last financial year.

The chief administrative officer, Mr Alex Chelimo Alex, said the district was allocated Shs1.6 billion in 2021/2022 financial year, but they received only Shs950 million.

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