Finance Minister Admits Absence of BOU Reports on Bank Closures

Minister Kasaija and BOU officials appearing before COSASE on Friday

The Minister for Finance, Planning and Economic Development, Matia Kasaija has regretted the manner in which Bank of Uganda closed the seven defunct banks, admitting there were no handover reports as well as relevant reports by BOU to the Ministry of Finance.

He said there has never been reports by the Central Bank on the closure of the banks as procedure would demand.

The Minister said this Friday while appearing before the Parliament Committee on Commissions, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises (COSASE) to respond to the concerns raised by legislators on the closure of the seven defunct commercial banks.

During the meeting, Kasaija was asked to among others explain why the Ministry has kept quiet despite not receiving any report from Bank of Uganda on the closure of the defunct banks.

The Committee Chairperson, Abdul Katuntu inquired to know from the Minister whether he doesn’t find it strange that seven banks were closed several years ago and to date, there are no reports on their closure.

“Don’t you think that in retrospect that it’s not correct to close institutions with no reports, if you see bank after bank being closed and you don’t ask BOU to avail a report since some of the issues may need policy interventions,” Katuntu said to the Minister.

“A bank closed in 1999 but to date there is no final report and the process of winding up is still going on even when officers that would be making the reports have passed on,” Kasaija responded, adding that “for sure I can say, where there were deficiencies we acted but I can’t commit myself to the fact that all the deficiencies have been resolved.

“For sure this can’t be acceptable because for an event like that for us to appreciate there should be a written report and recommendations; I must admit that is a shortcoming because I have never seen a report,” Kasaija admitted.

However promised that he will compel Bank of Uganda to avail all the relevant reports on the closure of the seven defunct banks.

While interfacing with the Parliament committe, Kasaija was joined by the Governor of BOU, Tumusiime Mutebile and Deputy Governor, Louis Kasekende.

“I accept there was a serious weakness on our side but I promise that we shall definitely demand officially in writing for Bank of Uganda to give us the reports,” Kasaija said.

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