German Chancellor Angela Merkel at a CDU party board meeting in Berlin.

JOHANNESBURG – Germany has cut back on the aid it provides to Uganda annually following a 2018 report by the United Nations’ that millions of dollars in funds used to help Kampala resettle refugees had been stolen.

Germany’s decision to withhold $106 million annually followed a similar decision by the United Kingdom last year that it would suspend its funding to Uganda in the wake of the UN report, the East African reported.

The discovery of the theft came to light when a whistleblower within the Ugandan government notified donors that large sums of money had been withdrawn from the account where it was deposited.

This prompted a joint investigation by the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF), the UN and the Ugandan government which uncovered that the number of refugees to Uganda had been inflated while resources for the refugees were missing.

But Germany’s belated decision more than a year after the discovery of missing funds is frustration over Kampala’s slowness in bringing those guilty to book, prompting donors to question its commitment to investigating the matter.

This is bad news for the 1.3 million refugees in Uganda, most of them from South Sudan. In 2017 the country received $350 million from donors with the UK, the US, the EU and Germany the primary benefactors.

Bonn says that the funds will be withheld until an investigation into the matter is launched by Kampala.

- African News Agency (ANA)