Pader councillors evict Journalists out of council hall
Last Updated on: 10th March 2022, 10:08 pm
Pader councillors are demanding more than shs 60m in unpaid allowances.
By Kinyera Anthony Lakomekec
Pader – March 10, 2022: Two journalists were on Thursday, March 10, 2022, forced to leave a meeting from the district council hall.
The meeting was called to handle the pending payments (arrears) of district councillors that have accumulated to over shs 60 million.
On March 3, the district councillors refused to attend a full council session over unpaid five months sitting allowances.
Gift Okello, a journalist who works with Luo FM was forced to leave the council hall with embarrassment.
“The media deserves to attend the meeting since they were engaged from the start by the same councillors who proposed their eviction,” Gift stated.
Many councillors, including John Bosco Odong for Lapul, Komakech Robert Obinna for Porogali, Okwir C. Ray for Pader sub-county, and others voted that the media should be forced to leave the meeting.
The same meeting was attended by the district chairperson and his executives.
The meeting should have been addressed by the Chief Administrative Officer (CAO), Alex Chelimo, but he was reported to have gone for official work out of the district.
Okwir (Pader sub-county) said that their communication should be in a systematic order that will call for the speaker’s press briefing on what transpired during the meeting.
“Certain issues are to be discussed in secrecy,” he added.
However, Welborn Ottober Odiya, Pader district speaker, rejected the idea, saying that he cannot express each of the councillor’s opinions since others were agreeing that the media should attend the meeting.
The meeting was typically called to address the issues of payments of sitting allowances that have accumulated to shs 67 million since the 46 councillors assumed office in 2021.
Out of 46 councillors, 41 are members who should get sitting allowances, but since assuming office, only two sittings were cleared (5 unpaid). Each of the councillors is demanding shs 325,000 per sitting.
The business committee also alleged that they are yet to receive their stipends (sitting allowances). In the committee, there are five members consisting of the different heads of departments who should be paid shs80,000 per sitting for four sittings.