FARG corruption scam claims 104

• 99 ‘ghost’ students unearthed  The probe committee set up late last year to investigate irregularities in the functions of the Fund for Support for Genocide Survivors (FARG), has unearthed damning initial results, The New Times, can reveal.
Nkusi Augustin.
Nkusi Augustin.

• 99 ‘ghost’ students unearthed 

The probe committee set up late last year to investigate irregularities in the functions of the Fund for Support for Genocide Survivors (FARG), has unearthed damning initial results, The New Times, can reveal.

The probe team made up of officials from the different government organs has unearthed irregularities which have so far led to the arrest of 104 people.

According to the Prosecution Spokesperson, Augustin Nkusi, those being held include 69 government officials, from the cell to the district level and 35 civilians.

“Those in custody are being investigated over embezzlement and mismanagement of either funds or materials,” said Nkusi.

“The probe is still going on and more people are likely to be arrested,” he added.

The investigating committee is made up of officials from the Office of the Prosecutor General, FARG, Ibuka (an umbrella body for genocide survivors associations) and the Ministry of Local Government.

Nkusi said that the government officials involved will be charged with embezzlement while the civilians will be requested to return the materials they took or mismanaged.

“The recovery process among citizens will be conducted by mediators but those who fail to pay will be brought before conventional courts,” added Nkusi

‘Ghost students’

Meanwhile, the prosecution has compiled a list of 99 ‘ghost’ students from 27 secondary schools that were discovered during the probe and have been benefiting from the FARG fund. Millions were lost in this scam.

Nkusi, during the interview on Saturday, said that the school officials who are involved are under investigation.

“So far we have listed 99 ghost students from only 27 out of the 336 schools investigated and more are expected to be unearthed at the end of the probe,” said Nkusi.

In total, 517 secondary schools countrywide benefit from the Fund. Other issues that are being discovered as the probe continues include misallocation and misuse of materials meant for the students.

Usually every student who benefits from FARG is supposed to be given four pairs of school uniform during a course of six years, but according to Nkusi, some schools did not honour this this.

“There are close to 1000 pairs of uniforms missing in 12 schools; there are also some schools that that have listed students as being in boarding yet they are in day school, we are investigating all those issues,” according to Nkusi, this particular issue was discovered in 88 schools.

A boarding student pays Rwf 60,000 while a day-scholar pays Rwf 30,000. Other issues that the committee has unearthed include 87 mattress that the school head teachers could not justify their whereabouts.

The probe into the 10-year old institution was launched following a series of complaints and irregularities that have characterized it throughout its lifetime.

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