Parliament has paid tribute to the fallen Bank of Uganda (BoU) Governor, Prof Emmanuel Tumusiime-Mutebile who died on Sunday, January 23, 2022 at Aga Khan Hospital where he was admitted over diabetes-related complications.
Eagle Online exclusively reported on January 4, 2022 that the economist was admitted to the Kenyan Health facility after he collapsed on 31st December 2021.
The motion to pay tribute to the longest serving Governor of BoU was moved by the Prime Minister Robinah Nabbanja. The motion was seconded by the Leader of Opposition in Parliament (LoP) Mathias Mpuuga.
MPs hailed the late Governor Mutebile for his firm spirit during ‘tough’ times, a character they say saved the economy from collapse. He is praised as an icon that rose to high ranks due to his comptence and faithfulness to service.
The LoP said Mutebile was the right man with the right credentials who rose on account of his competence that helped cushion our economy from a state of near collapse in the early 1990s.
“Mr Mutebile without fear attributed the Inflation and exchange rate depreciation of 2011 to the election cash bonanza. After city traders closing shops for weeks in a strike protesting against escalating dollar price, Mutebile admitted that this money was used for electioneering and promised that next time he would not allow it,” he said.
Jimmy Akena (UPC, Lira East) recalls the friendship between his late father, Milton Obote (former president) and Mutebile. Akena said the late Obote admired Mutebile and treated him as a family member and that Mutebile kept close to the family even after the demise of Obote.
Mutebile will be laid to rest at his ancestral home in Omuruhiti, Kabale Town on Sunday, 30th January 2022.
Mutebile has been on and off duty over the deteriorating health conditions. He was put on daily dialysis because his kidneys had weakened and they couldn’t do their excretion job. He was in September last year admitted at Nakasero hospital for a full week. He was later discharged and continued to be monitored from his Kololo based home. He was admitted to Cleveland hospital in Abu-Dhabi till December when he was discharged.
The 72 year old, whose contract was renewed on January 12th, 2021 for five years, has been at the helm of the central bank since 2001. He is the longest serving Chief Executive in the Bank of Uganda’s history. He is credited with many of the sound economic policies adopted by the Uganda government at the urging of the central bank during the 1990s and the first decade of the 2000s.
Amidst Covid-19 pandemic Mutebile and his team have kept Uganda’s economy generally stable. Inflation has been contained within the BOU target of 5% and the Shilling has remained stable against major currencies.
Mutebile was born on January 27 1949 in Kabale district Kigezi sub-region. He attended Kigezi College Butobere for his O-Level studies and then went to Makerere College School for his A-Level studies.
In 1970, he enrolled at Makerere University to study economics, where he was elected president of the university Students’ Guild.
He was forced to flee Uganda in 1972 after he gave a speech publicly criticizing the expulsion of Asians from the country by President Idi Amin, he fled to England and was able to finish his studies at Durham University graduating with an upper-second in Economics and Politics. In October 1974, he began his post-graduate studies at Balliol College, Oxford.
He returned to East Africa to Tanzania at the University of Dar es Salaam to lecture and conduct research while pursuing his doctorate in economics.
Between the year 1979 and 1984, Tumusiime-Mutebile was appointed to several government positions in Uganda ranging from Deputy Principal Secretary to the President at State House in 1979, to Undersecretary in the Ministry of Planning in 1981 where he rose to Senior Economist and then Chief Economist in 1984. In 1992, he was appointed Permanent Secretary to the newly combined Ministry of Finance Planning & Economic Development, a merger that he had advocated while working under Minister of Finance Gerald Ssendaula.