By Andrew Irumba
Kampala: Members of the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) party have demanded that government sacks Bank of Uganda governor Prof. Emmanuel Tumusiime Mutebile, over what they term as gross incompetence.
This follows the ongoing investigations into allegations that Bank of Uganda officials recently allegedly published excess money to the tune of Shs90Bn and allowed excess cargo to be carried on a plane chartered by BoU to fly the money into Uganda. Because of this multibillion scandal, FDC has called for the resignation of the BOU Governor, accusing him of incompetence. The call was made by the party Publicity Secretary and Kira Municipality Member of Parliament (MP), Ibrahim Semujju Nganda, who was addressing the party’s weekly press conference on Monday. Nganda said that “The scandals at the Central Bank are as a result of the inefficient and aging Governor of the Bank of Uganda. Until the country organizes to retire Museveni in whichever form, it will be difficult to sort out matters of this nature; Mutebile, Museveni, Rugunda and Kategaya, these were old boys of Obote who used to work in his government. May be each time he looks at Mutebile, he remembers when Obote employed them as political intelligence officers.”
He added that “FDC feels uncomfortable because Mutebile should have been retired in public interest long time ago since it is clear that with him still leading BOU, Ugandans should only wait for more scandals. There will be scandals one after the other, others will go unreported but they will be there because Mutebile is sleeping, but he is the one running the Central Bank. He only wakes up when more scandals are committed by his officials.” He also said that “Someone sane would have retired Mutebile and some of the other leaders at BOU long time ago. I don’t know if you have seen him walk recently, he himself is a walking scandal.” But while investigations into the scandal go on, Mutebile and government insist that there was no extra money on the chartered plan and but BoU accepts that although they had procured 20 pallets they instead received 25 pallets of money, which caused a procurement anomaly. Although the police had initially revealed that there was excess money that had been printed, government Spokesperson Ofwono Opondo refuted this allegation and claimed the investigations are focused on excess cargo that was flown into Uganda aboard a BoU chartered plane.
Ofwono said that The ongoing investigations have got nothing to do with extra printed money that was purportedly dumped into our economy but rather relates to extra cargo which in protocol is an anomaly when BOU or someone else charters a plane.” The Head State House Anti-corruption Unit, Lt. Col. Edith Nakalema, whose team was the first to raid BoU, also noted that investigations are focused on inclusion of unauthorised cargo on BOU chartered plane, not excess money. But this comes at a time when two BoU are in Luzira prisons, where they were remanded last week by the Anti-corruption court over the BoU scandal. They include Francis Kaketo and Fred Wanyama, who were charged for inclusion of unauthorised cargo on the BOU chartered plane. They were remanded until June 25 when they will place a fresh bail application.