Tycoon Hamis Kiggundu, the CEO of Ham Enterprises Ltd has come out and explained that Uganda’s banking sector needs immediate reforms to help boost the country’s economic growth.
In a Facebook video recorded live from his office, the businessman said that one of the major factor that has frustrated our development in Uganda are the weaknesses in our banking structures and weak monetary policies. He added that Uganda needs banking reforms to take off with full economic independence.
“It is unfortunate that many Ugandans are either unbothered, unnoticed or simply don’t attend to structures and systems. Today in Uganda we have a very weak banking sector which is totally compromised. Yes we got our independence in 1962 but we lack economic independence,” Ham said.
Ham pointed out that most banks in the country are foreign owned and also employ majority of their top employees from their countries of origin which according to him is dangerous for local growth of skills in the sector.
“These banks mainly employ foreigners even when it comes to MDs, CEOs, and managers which I find so unfair to the country because Uganda has a better education system. I am of a view that we have qualified accountants and financiers that have got the capacity to hold those jobs.”
“I call on the government to make reforms for each and every bank operating in Uganda for MD to be Ugandan. It would be our advantage that we have a local manager that can easily solve financial problems of fellow Ugandans,” he said.
He also added that these banks are discriminative and repatriate the profits which would be necessary to enhance development in the country.
According to Kiggundu, if a local entrepreneur applies for a loan of sh1bn, he will only receive a half of it and to make matters worse, it would take as much as one year to get the loan yet a foreign businessman would get the whole of it and in the shortest time possible.
While foreigners get interest rates of 16 per cent on loans, Ugandans get 20 per cent and above which is unfair according to Kiggundu.
Ham pledged to write to Parliament with a view of ensuring that the badly required changes get looked into to streamline the structure of the Country’s financial structures.