Speaker Kadaga

 

The Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga has directed Finance Minister Matia Kasaija to ask President Yoweri Museveni to appoint a Deputy Governor at Bank of Uganda.

Bank of Uganda is the central bank that regulates all the financial transactions in the country and this is the second time the Speaker has issued the directive over the vacant position of Deputy Governor after the expiry of Dr. Louis Kasekende contract.

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Ms Kadaga was responding to a government statement on vacant position at the central bank. In a statement read by State Minister in charge Microfinance, Haruna Kasolo, Minister Kasaija sought to ally that the delayed appointment of the new Deputy Governor had created a crisis at BoU.

Minister Kasolo told the house that all is well at the central bank despite the vacant position of the Deputy Governor.

“I would want to assure you and the country that the Governor Bank of Uganda, together with the board and management are fully in charge of the bank’s affairs. There is no reason for concern about any lapse with respect to its policies and strategic direction”

This response prompted the Speaker throwaway the reassurance but told off Minister Kasolo to instead tell the appointment authority to fast track the appointment of Deputy Governor.

On February 13, the  Speaker summoned Minister Kasaijja to explain why government had not appointed the Deputy Governor of Bank of Uganda  replacing  Kasekende.

According to Kadaga it’s only Emmanuel Tumusiime Mutebile taking on all the responsibilities of the governor yet he is supposed to have a deputy

“I am concerned about this crisis, therefore, I hereby order the Minister of Finance Matia Kasaijja to appear before Parliament to tell us when the deputy governor is going to be appointed,” Kadaga said.

The summons came after Igara County East Member of Parliament Michael Maranga Mawanda raised an issue of national importance in parliament tasking government to appoint a deputy governor for central bank.

“Madam Speaker, I am here to raise on an issue of national importance, I am currently working on the Bank of Uganda amendment bill 2019.But madam Speaker as I speak now, we don’t have a deputy governor for the Bank of Uganda, and the position is vacant. Can government explain to me why they are not appointing a new person?” Mawanda said then.

Former Bank of Uganda deputy governor Louis Kasekende contract expired on January 13 and he subsequently handed over his office to the governor after President Yoweri Museveni had declined to renew his contract.

Kasekende is one of the bank officials who witnessed dubious selling of seven defunct banks. Teefe in (1993), international credit Bank ltd in 1998, Greenland bank (1999), The Co-operative Bank (1999), National bank of commerce 2012, Global Trust Bank (2014) and the dubious sale of Crane Bank Ltd to Dfcu bank in 2016.

In 2018, Parliamentary Committee on Commission, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises (COSASE) led by the then chairperson, Abdul Katuntu embarked on an investigation into the closure of banks after Auditor General’s (AG) report which showed irregularities into the sale and closure of banks.

COSASE established that, some banks including Crane Bank Limited were liquidated on telephone calls without thorough evaluation. Crane Bank Limited was in 2016 put under receivership and later sold to Dfcu bank at a mere Shs200 billion whose value was to be recovered from the bad book. Crane bank had initial capital of Shs478 billion.

When BoU sold CBL to Dfcu bank it also transferred to the same bank freehold properties of CBL/Meera Investments Limited without following the law. CBL was renting the properties from Meera that were wrongfully transferred to Dfcu bank.

It also established that Kasekende and Mutebile failed their mandate of adequately supervising the management in the process of liquidating the financial institutions.