By Felix Basiime
The local government in Kasese District is facing a staff shortage after 85 staff members recently resigned from their jobs to join elective politics.
The district chief administrative officer (CAO), Mr Hamis Asuman Masereka, confirmed the development, saying 85 of his staff had tendered in their resignation letters while others sought early retirement in pursuit of politics.
"It is true that our staffs have joined politics. Some have resigned while others asked for early retirement as they seek their political dreams," Mr Masereka told Daily Monitor yesterday.
"As the district, we shall continue to offer service as we (district) see how to replace the officers. We are going to recruit more staff after doing wage bill analysis after the payment of first quarter salaries," he added.
Following the resignation and early retirement of the staff, the CAO had to carry out a mini-reshuffle for better service delivery.
The reshuffle has affected some sub-county senior secretaries and senior assistant town clerks for two councils who were managing their stations without required qualifications, and were recalled to their respective dockets.
Mr Henry Mbusa, a resident of Kasese District, said the rate at which civil servants are joining politics is a clear manifestation that it is now a lucrative business other than a leadership struggle .
"Civil servants are underpaid. A deliberate effort must be put in place to address their problems, otherwise, services delivery will be crippled," Mr Mbusa said.
He attributed the recent violence in the NRM primaries to greed for political power .
In Kabarole District, the chief administrative officer, Ms Fiona Sanyu, said one staff has resigned to join politics.
The town clerk of Fort Portal City, Mr Innocent Ahimbisibwe, said about five staff have also resigned to join politics.
Among them is Ms Sylvia Kihunde, a former senior accounts officer, who recently lost in the NRM primary election for Fort Portal Woman MP.
Among those who joined politics is Mr Sowedi Kitanywa, the former principal probation officer. He won the NRM parliamentary flag for Busongora County North after defeating Mr Robert Marule. Mr Marule quit his engineering job in Hima Town Council.
Mr Augustine Musema, a former community development officer for Mpondwe- Lhubiriha Town Council, unsuccessfully stood for the district chairperson seat on FDC ticket. He lost to the incumbent, Mr Geoffrey Sibendire Bigogo.
Ms Edina Peace Masika, who has been a parish chief in Karusandara Sub-county, is contesting as the Kasese Woman MP under National Unity Platform party.
In Kyarumba Sub-county, Ms Zainabu Asiimwe, who was the sub-county chief, has been recalled to serve as a community development officer to replace Mr Sowed Kitanywa.