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Over 100 prosecuted over Girinka, VUP misappropriations
Published on 31-08-2016 - at 09:03' by Théophile Niyitegeka

Statistics from Rwanda National Public Prosecution Authority indicate that the body has received files accusing 110 individuals of involvement in malpractices which saw Rwf 492, 007,219 meant to support citizens through VUP, Girinka, Ubudehe and Nkunganire misappropriated.

Some of these files were taken to courts to try suspects while other files were archived.

So far almost Rwf 27 billion has been allocated to VUP in the past eight years.

Accusation files sent to the prosecution indicate that VUP records the largest number of fund misappropriations among other programs .VUP managers outnumber other subjects of misappropriation in malpractices of forming ghost associations to be supported.

For instance 80% of VUP fund worth Rwf 12.5 billion misallocated in eastern Province was diverted in ghost projects in the past eight years.

Some case files of VUP-related misappropriations were received in 2014/2015. Eight of them were transferred to courts while two of them were dismissed as they had no evidence. One remaining file has not yet been concluded. Under this case 34 individuals are accused in 10 of 11 files.

The National Prosecution also received 39 case files related to VUP misappropriations in 2015/2016 . Girinka program also recorded a variety of problems including bribery cases, favoritism, and offering cows to unqualified people.

In 2014/2015, the National Prosecution received eight files accusing eight people involved in Girinka malpractices. Six of them were transferred to courts while two others were dismissed.

In 2015/2016 the National Prosecution received 17 files of accusations from Girinka malpractices. Five of these files were sent to courts while 10 of them were dismissed.

Files sent to courts accuse 15 suspects including leaders and ordinary citizens.

In 2015 and 2016, the National Prosecution received six files of people accused of jeopardizing Ubudehe program along with other eight files accusing 12 people.

It is said that 270 leaders have been arrested, some received penalties while others were sentenced.

Presiding over the completion of civic education of 834 leaders on March 31st, 2016 President Paul warned leaders against misappropriation of programs meant for citizens’ welfare.

The Background

It has been ten years since the government of Rwanda introduced programs aimed at eradicating poverty among citizens by providing support especially to most vulnerable individuals who received cows, loans to start up projects among other sustainable development projects.

Girinka Munyarwanda program was launched in 2006. It was followed by Vision Umurenge Program (VUP) launched in 30 sectors of the country which had most vulnerable citizens. VUP was extended to 240 sectors in 2015. These projects went into force along with others of Ubudehe and Nkunganire (a program of distributing selected seeds and fertilizers to citizens).

Under Girinka Munyarwanda program, vulnerable families had to receive a cow to facilitate the fight against malnutrition among children and boost such families’ welfare whereas VUP program was meant to provide loans to vulnerable citizens who have to pay back the fund through providing labour. On the other hand vulnerable individuals unable to execute compensation work are not supposed to pay back VUP loan.

Such programs played a role but didn’t match expectations in poverty reduction plans because of some leaders involved in malpractices while implementing these projects. Realizing the severity of the matter, in 2014/2015 Rwanda National Public Prosecution Authority started following up cases where individuals jeopardized the programs, some of were sacked, leaving others arrested.


Kwamamaza
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