The Governor Bank of Uganda (BOU), Prof. Emmanuel Tumusiime Mutebile has revealed that the country’s Central Bank is committed to ensuring transparency and accountability despite the increasing negative sentiments about the institution.
The Governor revealed this in his message in the institution’s annual report 2019 which was released recently.
Mutebile said that during the year 2018/2019, the Bank of Uganda continued to engage the Parliamentary Committee on Commissions, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises (COSASE) as well as other accountability mechanisms put in place by the laws of Uganda.
“In advertently, the accountability process has been misconstrued by certain stakeholders leading to an increase in negative sentiments about the institution,” Mutebile said.
It should be noted that during the COSASE probe into the closure of the seven defunct banks by Bank of Uganda, the Central Bank was put on the spot for committing a number of irregularities during the process of closure.
According to the COSASE report to Parliament in February 2019, Bank of Uganda flouted a number of procedures and laws and in some incidents, BoU officials acted illegally while closing some banks.
In the case of Crane Bank Limited which was closed in October 2016, the committee reported that the bank was illegally closed, noting that an analysis of the Bank’s liquidity from 1st January to 24th January 2017 revealed that the financial institution had recovered from liquidity distress from mid-January 2017 to the time it was disposed on 25th January 2017.
“In fact, Bank of Uganda had stopped injecting money on 9th January 2017. Therefore the bank’s liquidity position had stabilized,” noted the then committee Chairperson, Abdul Katuntu while delivering the report to the House.
The report also observed that Bank of Uganda failed to value the assets and liabilities of Global Trust Bank, National Bank of Commerce and Crane Bank Limited and caused the lapse of time and impossibility in revaluation of assets, recommending bank of Uganda to address the probable financial loss occasioned.
The Central bank has also suffered damage from the recent alleged illegal ferrying of the Ugandan currency by its officials. Some of them were arrested in connection to the allegations.
The media was awash with stories to the effect that Bank of Uganda officials had illegally printed excess money from Germany to a tune of Shs 90bn for their personal benefit.
These and many more have indeed tainted the image of the country’s central bank. However, the Governor maintains that the institution is committed to remain steadfast in executing its legal mandate.
“Bank of Uganda remains steadfast in upholding its values of transparency & Accountability; Integrity; team work; and excellence in executing its mandate,” Mutebile noted in his end of year report.