Parliament Orders BOU to Withraw Privileges; Car, Security from Embattled Bagyenda

Former Executive Director for Bank Supervision at BOU, Justine Bagyenda, meditates during a recent COSASE hearing (Courtesy photo)

The Parliament committee on Commissions, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises (COSASE) has ordered Bank of Uganda to withdraw with immediate effect all privileges including security and car that they had given to the former Executive Director bank supervision Justine Bagyenda.

During the COSASE proceedings on Friday, Kasilo county MP, Elijah Okupa asked the current BOU executive director bank supervision to clarify why Bagyenda was still using Bank of Uganda property yet she had retired and the governor had informed them she had allowed her to use it up to December 31st 2018.

On appearing today, the acting Executive Director Administration Jan Tibamwenda informed the committee that Bagyenda had handed over the property of Bank of Uganda in August but the current car she is using was given to her to facilitate her travel to the committee as they did not want the bodyguard they had allocated to her to use public means when armed.

“Bagyenda retired at the end of July 2018 and as soon as she retired, we withdrew the official Bank of Uganda vehicle that she was using in her capacity as an Executive Director in the Bank,” Tibamwenda said.

“Bagyenda started using her own private vehicle. However, when COSASE started and the Governor was asked to invite Bagyenda to appear before this Committee, she requested for security sighting several security complaints,” Tibamwenda added.

Tibamwenda added that when Bagyenda came back from abroad, “She informed us that she had been meeting challenges travelling in her private vehicle with an armed guard especially when entering the premises of Parliament.”

The Committee Vice Chairperson, Anite Among who was chairing the committee interjected noting that this was contrary to the communication by the Governor, Emmanuel Mutebile who noted that the decision was taken to extend Bagyenda’s privileges up to December 31st.

Among asked under whose orders Tibamwenda acted to extend Bagyenda’s bank privileges after 31st December.

“The decision was made by me after carrying out consultations for purposes of COSASE, we consulted Director Security, Director Administration Services, the in charge of transport and a decision was made just because we prioritized the activities of COSASE to be above anything else, because we didn’t want a situation where she would fail to turn up because of transport,” Tibamwenda explained.

Among faulted Tibamwenda for taking such a misplaced decision that has since cost public funds.

“It is not your responsibility to provide Bagyenda transportation to the committee, it is a constitutional provision under article 164 so it isn’t that anybody should be bribed to appear before this Committee,” Among said.

“These are public funds you are wasting, after public funds being wasted in closure of banks, you are continuing to waste these public funds.”

Before the committee could take a final decision, Tibamwenda informed members that the board as well took a decision to extend Bagyenda’s privileges up to June, 2019.

The committee thus took a decision ordering BOU to compile all the financial implications caused since January 1, 2019 to date for the aim of retrieving the money.

“The Executive Director Supervision should furnish us with information on the financial implication and we shall recover the money from the person who made a decision and must provide evidence of collection,” Among ruled.

She as well ruled that Bagyenda should stop using the bank facilities, the car and security body guard with effect from today.

“Today should be the last day Bagyenda is using property of Bank of Uganda and we are revoking the decision of your board,” she said.

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