THE Chairman for Nyakatuntu Agricultural and Marketing Cooperative Society (AMCOS) in Karagwe District Issa Katunzi (54) was on Thursday arraigned before Bukoba Resident Magistrates’ Court faced with two counts, misuse of office and occasioning a loss amounting 72m/- property of AMCOS.
Another co-accused identified as Mussa Katunzi (47) is Secretary General of AMCOS.
State Attorney Haruna Shomari alleged in court that the two accused, being employed by Nyakatuntu AMCOS, occasioned a loss of 72m/-. The offence was allegedly committed between June 2018 and October 2019.
In his ruling, Kagera Resident Magistrate in Charge John Kapokolo informed the accused that the case would be tried by the High Court. He adjourned the case No 5/2020 until April 14, this year, and ordered the accused to be remanded.
Meanwhile, five leaders, including the chairperson of Kaibanja Primary Cooperative Society (KPCS) are interrogated by the Prevention and Combating of Corruption Bureau (PCCB) in connection with the disappearance of 25 tonnes of coffee worth 28m/-, the property of AMCOS.
Bukoba District Commissioner (DC) Deodatus Kinawiro named the suspects as Amida Maulid - the chairperson, Hadija Lucas, Zena Mohamed, Jasson Mugarula and Sweetbert Mutembei - the secretary.
“The five suspects will be arraigned when investigation is completed,” he said.
According to Mr Kinawiro, the coffee was collected from farmers in Kaibanja Ward in Bukoba Rural District in August last year, but the leaders had to date not paid the farmers their money.
On January 28, this year, four leaders of Ngara Farmers’ Cooperative Society (NFCS), including the chairman, Thomson Siyongwe (62), were arraigned before the Bukoba Resident Magistrates’ Court charged with nine counts, including misuse of office, conspiracy and occasioning a loss of 14.1m/-, the property of NFCS.
Other co-accused who appeared before Kagera Resident Magistrate in-charge John Kapokolo were Paschal Minani (70) - NFCS manager, Paschal Kangere (50- accountant and Basilius Thomas (53) - a storekeeper.
Prosecuting State Attorney Haruna Shomari alleged before the court that the four accused, being employed by NFCS between 2012 and 2014, wilfully occasioned a pecuniary loss of 14.1m/- to NFCS.
Other offences facing them include misuse of public office, misuse of their positions and conspiracy to commit an offence. He contended that since the offences fell under the Economic and Organised Crime Act the court had no jurisdiction to grant bail to the accused.
Efforts by the accused to get bail failed after Magistrate John Kapokolo clarified in his ruling that an application for bail should be channelled through the High Court which was the trial court.