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I Am Ready To Hand Over Office, Says Katuntu

The outgoing Chairperson of the Parliamentary Committee on Commissions, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises (COSASE) Abdu Katuntu has put speculation to rest by stating that he is ready to handover office.

This ends months of contestations between the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) party leadership and the Speaker Rebecca Kadaga following selection of  Kawempe South legislator Mubarak Munyagwa to the top seat.

Addressing the house shortly after presenting the special audit report on defunct banks, Katuntu thanked committee members for their cooperativeness before adding that that sooner than later working with the opposition leadership, he is going to hand over instruments of power as dictated by parliamentary rules.

“A lot has been written about people not holding offices. I am ready to hand over office on Monday at ten. Even if he does not organize, I will be handing in on Monday at ten,” he says.

Meanwhile, the COSASE report has specifically faulted the Central Bank for reluctantly allowing an interested party in Crane Bank’s purchase DFCU to determine the value of assets and liabilities in total contravention of section 95 (3) of the financial institutions act 2004 which requires determining the value of assets and liabilities basing on a realistic discount rate .

According to this report, prejudicial of financial laws DFCU only assumed liability to a tune of 200 billion shillings whereas the outstanding liability owed to Bank of Uganda by Crane bank was to a tune of 478 billion shillings.

The same document observes that this action which was financially disadvantageous to both BOU and Crane Bank would have greatly been avoided if crane bank’s total assets had been accounted for in the Purchase and Acquisition Agreement.

In relation to the same issue, the report also wonders why DFCU was given a green light to go ahead and purchase CBL without adequately accounting for the entity they are purchasing yet  in the case of other defunct entities such items were listed in the P&A agreement.

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Besides that, the report also questions circumstances under which the then Director commercial Banking, BOU Mr. Ben Sekabira managed to juggle multiple roles among which included being the agent of M/S Nile River Acquisition Company the recipient of ICB, Greenland and Co-operative Bank while at the same time executing central bank duties. As if that is not enough, the document goes on to wonder how Executive Director Bank Supervision Mrs. Justine Bagyenda was able to grant another purchaser Octavian Advisors plc exclusivity at pre biding stage before exhaustively discussing details with the central bank’s hierarchy.

Key among recommendations, the report states that officers involved should be held responsible for conflict of interest. Other than that it also suggests that Uganda Revenue Authority take interest in the activities of M/s Nile River Acquisition Company and its agents, M/S JN Kirkland and M/s SIL Investments to recover unpaid tax.

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