The Committee on Commissions, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises (Cosase), has summoned Central Bank Governor Emmanuel Tumusiime Mutebile to answer queries related to the closure of commercial banks.
The summon follows failure of Bank of Uganda (BoU) officials to turn up for over three scheduled meetings with Cosase committee members.
A few weeks ago the Speaker of Parliament Rebecca Kadaga directed the current Cosase chairperson Mubarak Munyagwa to conduct a fresh investigation into Bank of Uganda’s closure of commercial banks.
Kadaga’s request came after Chris Tushabe Karobwa petitioned her accusing BoU of mismanaging the receivership of Cooperative Bank.
Karobwa also alleged that Katuntu’s committee had partially handled his case but did not complete it, to his detriment.
As one way of starting the probe, last month Cosase summoned BoU officials to respond to complaints by Karobwa who claims that he lost properties when the 1997 Cooperative Bank was closed. Karobwa claims that he lost over Shs3 billion in cash and property worth Shs1.42 billion and an overdraft of Shs600 million.
Munyagwa said that BoU officials were supposed to appear before the committee on August 15 and then between Monday, August 19 and Wednesday August 21. However they didn’t come.
On Wednesday, when the committee gathered only the petitioner, Karobwa appeared but BoU officials didn’t appear neither didn’t they notify the committee.
This caused the premature adjournment of the meeting to Thursday, the day Mutebile was expected to appear before them.
According to Munyagwa the Constitution gives Parliamentary committees’ quasi powers of the High Court to issue summons to any minister or person holding public office and private individuals and also enforce the attendance of witnesses for its proceedings however BoU official have not replied their summons.
“We have issued the summons to Mutebile since his officials have not turned up because we expected them to appear before us. BOU officials including Mutebile should attend the next meetings as they listen to petitioners who allege that they lost properties following the closure of seven commercial banks,” said Manyagwa.
Cosase chairman further said his committee will issue a warrant of arrest against Mutebile if he fails to honour the invite this time round.
Other committee members such as Katakwi Woman lawmaker, Violet Adome Akurut and Samia Bugwe North legislator Gideon Onyango said that Mutebile and his officials must appear before the committee because they must realise that there are people who lost properties or were grossly affected following the closure of seven commercial banks.