Driver Charged for Transporting Pineapples in Gov’t Ambulance

The Anti-Corruption Court has charged a driver Matayo Barekye for using a government ambulance to transport pineapples.

Barekye was today arraigned before the Anti-Corruption Court and charged with misuse of a government motor vehicle.

He was arraigned before the Court presided over by Grade One Magistrate Moses Nabende who read to him one count of misuse of a government motor vehicle which he denied.

Court has heard that on January 27th 2022, Barekye who was entrusted to drive an Hospital Ambulance registration number UG 3797M Toyota Land cruiser misused it by transporting pineapples.

According to the Prosecution, this crime was committed at Nyamunuka Trading Centre in Ntungamo District and Barekye was a driver employed by Rukungiri District Local Government as a driver attached to Kebisoni Health Centre IV.

The State Attorney Jacqueline Kyosiimire informed court that investigations in this case are complete and asked to be given a date for hearing to commence.  However, Barekye through his lawyers led by Ronald Tusingwire and Ben Makumbi has asked to be released on bail and presented two sureties whom they noted that were substantial.  

His lawyers have also submitted that since investigations are complete, Barekye will not interfere with them.

Accordingly, the Magistrate has granted him bail of 2.5 million shillings Cash and and his sureties have been ordered to execute a non-cash bond of 7 Million Shillings. He then adjourned the case to March 14th 2022 for the hearing to commence.

Trouble for Barekye started when a concerned citizen at Nyamunuka trading center along Rukungiri-Ntungamo road in Ntungamo district filmed him while offloading pineapples.    

According to the Ministry of Heath reports, the ambulance had transported a mother who had given birth by cesarean section from the facility back home in Ntungamo but health officials were shocked to see it in a picture on social media offloading pineapples.

He was accordingly arrested by Police in Rukungiri last week and later brought to Kampala where he was charged this afternoon. Barekye has since been interdicted by the Rukungiri Deputy District Chief Administrative Officer Richard Ndora Kagaba to pave way for investigations. 

Kagaba also directed him not to leave the country without permission from his office as the CAO. If found guilty, Barekye is likely to face a three year jail term as the punishment provided in the Anti-Corruption Act for the offense he has been charged with.