ARUA. The headteacher of St Kizito primary school, Mr Kennedy Ati’buni, and School Management Committee (SMC) chairman, Msgr. Casto Adeti who is also the parish priest of Ediofe cathedral parish were on Friday pinned by the former Parents, Teachers Association (PTA) chairman, Mr Victoria Geria over unaccounted for fund amounting to Shs261,351,000million.
While citing the headteacher and SMC chairman at the core of misappropriation of the funds during the Annual General Meeting on Friday, Geria backed his allegation with evidence of bank statements from 2018 to 2019.
He alleged that the current construction of a classroom block at the school is questionable accountability to the mismanaged funds, adding that the original plan of the building is for a storied house.
Geria was refuting allegations against him by the school administrators where he is alleged to have embezzled Shs 40million meant for the purchase of a Costa for the school.
He said the matter became his issue by the 23rd of October last year after he refused to sign a withdrawal slip for the Shs 40milion because he wanted to first see requisition for the withdrawal.
He said the next day, a meeting was convened by Msgr. Casto Adeti as an emergency meeting where he (Geria) was disregarded to attend it where they removed him as a signatory to the account.
He said Msgr. Adeti wrote letters on headed paper of Arua diocese to centenary and KCB banks, a document that paved way for easy withdrawal several times from the school account.
He said the headmaster on several occasions withdrew more money as opposed to what is approved by the management, irregularities that prompted him and finance chairman to write to the two banks in order to stop the withdrawals but only KCB complied.
The headteacher, Mr Kennedy Atibuni denied the allegations saying they are meant to tarnish their image and demoralize the image of the school administrators.
“The story of Shs 261million that is being claimed to have been misappropriated by me is all over social media and it is unfortunate that some of the people posting this are members of SMC who are supposed to be accountable for the alleged shs261million”, Atibuni said.
Ati’buni confirmed that an audit report by Alpha Audit firm in 2018 showed that the money was misappropriated but the report has never been concluded since July 2018 as the responsibility was handed over to the advocacy committee established to finalize the process.
Msgr. Adeti declined to speak about the allegation when his time to talk came. Police has however also picked interest in the matter as angry parents have demanded accountability of all the school funds.
St Kizito Orphanage primary school, St Assumpta health centre III and a host of other institutions were started by late Emeritus bishop of Arua diocese Fredrick Drandua in 2003 to cater to underprivileged children. After his death the institutions remained under a trust of Bishop Fredrick Drandua foundation but this ownership has of late been contested by the diocese which wants to repossess them. The matter is before the court for mediation.