Prof. Wasswa Balunywa

 

 

Makerere University Business School Principal Prof. Waswa Balunywa has been tipped to replace outgoing Deputy Governor Louis Kasekende.

Kasekende who is struggling to have his contract retained or extended has been lobbying powerful figures close to the presidency to retain his number two slot at the central bank.

Prof. Balunywa once served on the board of directors of Bank of Uganda but above all, it is his result oriented economic policies that have turned MUBS  from Uganda College of Commerce (UCC) Nakawa  to leading business school in the country.  Although cabinet granted MUBS  a university status as Kampala Metropolitan University, the MUBS council feel it is better to retain the current status given that it is the only leading business constituent college of Makerere University majoring in business studies.

Prof. Balunywa was over the weekend at Rwakitura, President Yoweri Museveni’s country home where he led a delegation of MUBS staff and council members to meet the president and First Lady and Minister of Education and Sports over the long standing salary increment in public universities.

According to reliable source at BoU, Dr. Kasekende is supposed to leave the number two slot at the central bank mid-January 2020. However, it is understood that given that the board hasn’t renewed or given him an extension of the contract, this has forced Dr. Kasekende to lobby the powerful figures within government without success.

Eagle Online has reliably learnt from credible sources that forced with no clear position on his contract, Kasekende over the weekend sent emissaries  led by former Minister of Finance, Planning and Economic Monitoring, Gerald Ssendawula  and  Catholic clerics to President Yoweri Museveni’s country home of Rwakitura over the weekend to lobby the president with a view of retaining him Kasekende at BoU.

The delegation which is reported to have been dominated by male clerics  argued that it is true BoU needs urgent changes but the changes must be uniform and implemented at a given time without necessarily targeting some individuals. It is common in Uganda for politicians and technocrats to run back to religious leaders for protection or seeking job promotion. And given that Kasekende is faced with uncertainty in his contract, an awkward situation with little assistance but  rather to fall back to religious and political leaders to lobby the president.

Earlier on, reports emerged that Kasekende had unsuccessfully tried to meet President Museveni in an effort to try and explain himself before the appointment authority. Kasekende could have resorted to lobbying the religious leaders after his key contacts in State House were reshuffled and therefore, it complicates matters for him.

Eagle Online has also been informed that Kasekende over the weekend was in Kabale meeting the Permanent Secretary Ministry of Finance and Secretary to the Treasury Keith Muhakanizi.

Parliament recommended changes at BoU after the Commissions, State Authorities and State Enterprises (COSASE) investigations recommended that there is leadership deficit at BoU.

However, a section of society opposed to his stay at the helm of central bank say retaining/extending contract will be underminding the resolution of parliament recommended that there was need to restructure BoU more so the offices of Governor, Deputy Governor and the board.

However, the same people say Kasekende isn’t a right person to retain the job because under his leadership, scandals after scandal have rocked the bank putting its name in disrepute.

Some of the scandal to rock BoU under Kasekende’s watch

The purchase of pens each at Shs350, 000

Closure of banks without proper guidelines and decisions made on phone calls

Auditor General’s report findings on how Shs487 billion was misused by BoU team on Crane bank in receivership

The Shs90 billion printed illegally and smuggled into the country

Old currency saga involving stealing from the BoU currency centres across the country.