By Ronald Batre and Stephen Candia
Former Arua district LC 5 chairman Andama Richard Ferua has been arrested and subsequently jailed for failing to pay 25 million shillings rent arrears that accumulated during his first term of office.
Ferua was arrested by court bailiffs last evening and taken to Arua government prison after he failed to pay his former land lord Mustafa Adirisi the former vice president of after staying in house located at Anyafio an upscale suburb of Arua town.
While appearing before Arua grade two magistrate’s court on orders of the chief magistrate, Ferua who looked helpless could neither deny nor accept the civil charge read against him as there was even no body to rescue him to pay the debt.
Because of the problem magistrate Alioni sent Ferua to Arua government prison to spent six months or pay the 25 million shllings if he wants to regain his freedom.
At first when Adirisi opened a civil suit against Ferua, the rent arrears had accumulated to 14 million shillings and court ordered him to pay but he failed to pay the money forcing the former land lord to secure court order to have the form district boss arrested and jailed yesterday.
According to Alioni, it was embarrassing and sad moment for the person of high profile who managed the whole district for at least 10 years to be arrested and taken to jail because of failing to pay rent but this should sound as warning to others who will want to do the same in future.
According to the civil debt procedures, Ferua will spend the six months in jail if he fails to clear the 25 million shillings, then the prison authorities will renew another contract to keep him for another six months just like that until he pays or court declares him bankrupt or the land lord accepts to settle the matter out of court.
Andama Richard Ferua has also the vice president of the Uganda Local Government Association during his 2006-2011.
On hearing the news of Ferua’s arrest the current LC 5 chairman Wadri Sam Nyakua and the RDC Arua Ibrahim Abiriga tried their best to rescue their former district boss up to night hours but their efforts were fruitless the condition was that Ferua pays the debt.
According to the local government Act, a district chairperson is entitled to a free house that is paid by the district council and according to records obtained from the office of the chie administrative officer Arua, the district used to pay Ferua’s house rent through his bank account but it is not yet clear how he failed to remit the money to his former land lord.
Richard Andama Ferua’s problems started in 2006 when he was accused of presenting forged academic papers to the electoral commission during the 2006 general elections while seeking re-election on the NRM ticket that forced him to use a lot of money to bail himself out of the case that was filed by his opponent Dan Opima who lost the elections.
Because of debts from both individuls and bandk all the Banks in West Nile had also put ban on him from borrowing money from them unless all the debts he has in the banks he borrowed from are offset. END