By Spy Uganda
Former Bank of Uganda deputy governor Louis Kasekende and ex-director Supervision Justine Bagyenda, are being investigated by the Internal Security Organisation (ISO) and the Inspector General of Government (IGG) , over allegations that they could have information as to why the Central Bank registered losses of Shs2 Trillion.
Our Spies reveal that apart from Kasekende and Bagyenda, also on the list of those to be probed is; head of legal Margaret Kasule and Benedict Sekabira, BoU Director for Financial Markets Development Coordination among others.
The Spies also reveal that the IGG and ISO have been directed by President Yoweri Museveni to investigate the officials, after it was revealed by State Minister for Finance David Bahati that the Central bank has been making losses for the past 13 years when the above officials were in charge.
However, it was not readily clear why governor Emmanuel Tumusiime Mutebile was not on the list our Spies peeped at.
Bahati last week shocked the nation when he told Parliament that BoU registered losses amounting to Shs2 trillion in the past 13 years.
Bahati said the Bank of Uganda posted only Shs40 billion in profits in 15 years, which was remitted to the Consolidated Fund Account as required by the Bank of Uganda Act. The Shs40 billion profits were registered in 2007, and since then, the Central Bank has been making losses.
Breakdown of Losses Made by BoU since 2008
2008/2009 BoU Lost Shs2.8 billion
2009/2010 BoU Lost Shs140 billion
2010/2011 BoU Lost Shs98 billion
2011/2012 BoU Lost Shs147 billion
2013/2014 BoU Lost Shs14 billion
2014/2015 BoU Lost Shs118 billion
2015/2016 BoU Lost ugx81.9 billion
2016/2017 BoU Lost ugx452 billion
2017/2018 BoU Lost ugx406 billion
2018/2019 BoU Lost ugx195 billion
Kenneth Lubogo, the Member of Parliament for Bulamogi, asked Bahati about the profits or losses BoU has made annually for the last 15 years.
In his submission, MP Richard Othieno (NRM, West Budama North) said that “Bank of Uganda trades in securities; the minister is talking of making losses; can the minister brief the country the circumstances under which the bank made the losses yet it trades in securities?”
Minister Bahati, however, said BoU made losses and nothing can be done about it.
Bahati said that “The bank truly trades in securities but it invests in monetary policies that involve in making losses; these are the facts on the ground; we cannot do anything about it because a loss is a loss.”
It should, however, be noted that in 2018, the IGG launched an investigation into the massive wealth of 100 BoU top officials among them Kasekende , governor Tumusiime Mutebile and Bagyenda and others, although it hit a snag.
In his declaration of income, assets and liabilities form to the IGG, Kasekende revealed that he acquired his wealth through savings from research grants, salary, travel allowances, mutually agreed separation allowance from AfDB, pension BoU and AfDB as well as a disturbance allowance by Bank of Uganda.
In the same form, Kasekende, who was last reappointed deputy governor on January 18, 2015, also listed rental income as another source of wealth, citing five properties in upscale Gaba, Lubowa, Ntinda, Naguru and Kololo valued at Shs2.1Bn, Shs1.4B , Shs0.39b, Shs1.3Bn and Shs2bBn. These, he declares, bring in a monthly fee of USD13,233 (Shs52m).
On top of that, Kasekende has a residential house worth Shs0.5Bn, plus a farm valued at Shs500m and Greenhill Academy (jointly owned with his wife Edith Kasekende) among other multi-billion assets.
Bagyenda In Hot Soup
In another petition to the IGG, a whistleblower claimed that Mrs Bagyenda had accumulated over Shs 19Bn within a space of two years. The money, the whistleblower claimed, was stashed on bank accounts in various commercial banks that included Diamond Trust Bank and Barclays Bank.
The Banks made a public apology to Mrs Bagyenda after bank statements purported to be hers, leaked on social media.
The former powerful lady the Central Bank was also linked to 17 properties in central and western Uganda worth several billions of shillings, according to the petitioner. Bagyenda was supposed to declare her wealth to the IGG last December but she never did.
However, it was the Parliament probe implicating the dubious closure of seven commercial banks without following the letter of the law, which shook the world. Among the closed bank are; Teefe bank (1993), International Credit Bank (1998), Greenland Bank (1999), Cooperative Bank (1999), National Bank of Commerce (2012), Global Trust Bank (2014) and Crane Bank (2016).
The rot at Bank of Uganda was unearthed by legislators on the Parliamentary Committee on State Authorities and Statutory Enterprises (COSASE) as they investigated the closure of Crane Bank in 2016, plus the closure and sale of six other commercial banks by BoU.
Legislators learnt that BoU officials acted with reckless abandon and impunity while closing banks, whereby some of some like Crane Bank were closed and sold through phone calls and that there were no minutes or necessary documents pertaining to the sale