Poor politicians wanted over unpaid group loans

The most wanted Tonny Etia who is on the run

Two local councilors of Ogur Sub County in Erute North, Lira district are hiding in bushes after they defied paying loans amounting to Uganda Shs1.3m.

The duo allegedly borrowed the said loan from Yamalo Village Saving and Loan Association (Y-VSLA), a local saving group in their area.

The debtors have been identified as Tonny Etia, 32 who’s the Ogur Sub County Speaker and Moses Odongo, a councilor representing Okwaloamara parish in the same Sub County.

Both local politicians are reported to have borrowed the money in January this year, agreeing to pay back before 13 April this year.

Group officials say none of them honored the agreement and they all went into hiding since then.

“Can you imagine Mr. Etia came to us himself and pleaded that we give him a loan of Shs1m to pay dowry for his marriage. After giving him, he’s now turning us to be his enemy by disappearing,” Yeko Otoa, the VSLA chairperson told our Reporter

Otoa further reveals thus: “Meanwhile, Odongo owes us Shs. 300, 000 and has for long been dodging to pay.”

Properties seized

Mr. Otoa explains that with their attempts to negotiate with the two councilors not yielding fruits, on Friday (last week); the group paid a secret visit to their residences and impounded some items.

“We visited them (homes) but Odongo took off to the bush. However, with Etia, the group impounded some items like two plastic chairs, three tables valued at Shs.100, 000,” he added.

Christine Oyar, the group Vice chairperson said the two politicians have affected the group’s operation and capacity to give loans.

“This has also portrayed bad example to their electorates,” Oyar added.

Group members of Yamalo VSLA in a planing meeting recently

Semmy Apunyu, one of the group members wondered why the two were given huge sum of money yet they are non-members.

“I now fears losing my saving of Shs300, 000 if borrowers are not servicing their loans,” Apunyu noted.

Adding:  “I think our group leaders did not take into account the integrity of the two politicians. For that reason if they (councilors) defy further, the group leaders would be held accountable for the loss,” Apunyu opined.

Speaking to TND News from his hideout, Tonny Etia confirmed that he received the money to solve his personal problem.

“I’m working day and night to repay,” he said, switching off his phone.

His comrade, Odongo could not be reached as his known phone number could not go through.

Past record

This is not the first time the accused politician, especially Odongo Moses is entangled in controversies with community.

In December last year, Moses Odongo (the then Secretary of Works & Technical Services) at Ogur Sub County was arrested on allegation of theft vide SD REF: 06/20/07/2017. He was charged at Ogur Police Outpost.







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