The Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga has re-assured the Muslim community in Uganda that Islamic Banking will soon be operationalised.
Kadaga who was presiding at the Annual Parliament Iftar dinner on Friday said that following the passing of the bill, the Minister of Finance was tasked with seeing that Islamic Banking is effected.
“I want to assure you that the Minister of Finance is here to inform us on how far Islamic banking is as we had made an undertaking on updating you on the same,” she said.
She also called on the faithful to always share what they have with the less privileged in society.
“While in hospital, I read a book about a Nigerian governor who gave a lot every Friday. He survived two plane crashes, one motor accident and I believe that was why the Lord saved his life,” she said.
In 2016, the Parliament passed the Financial Institutions Amendment Bill, which introduced the Islamic system of banking that allows for access to interest free loans with no collateral. Passing this Bill however, is subject to the establishment of a Central Sharia Advisory Board in the Central Bank to regulate Islamic banking.
The Minister of State for Finance, David Bahati assured the Muslim Community that the law was in operation to allow Islamic banking.
“I would like to inform you that the Members of Parliament did amend the Law to allow Islamic banking, which is now operational. So far one bank has applied and has been licensed, we are inviting all banks to come and take up this opportunity,” he said.
The Deputy Speaker, Jacob Oulanyah also graced the occasion and encouraged the Muslim Community to be generous in this period and assured them that he would be joining them in prayer.
“I will be praying with you during this time because God is God and we serve the same God. I have also seen so many of my old friends; this event has brought us together and we can remind ourselves of the bond we have as citizens of this country,” he said.
Parliament for six years has opened its gates to the Muslim Community to share in Iftar dinner. Iftar is one of the religious observances of Ramadan and is often done as a community, with people gathering to break their fast together. Iftar is taken just after the call to prayer Maghrib, which is at sunset.