Bagyenda still enjoys BOU car, guards

Nearly a year after she left her job at Bank of Uganda (BOU), Justine Bagyenda, the former Executive Director in charge of Banks Supervision still enjoys the privileges of her office.

The lady at the centre of the controversy surrounding the closure of seven commercial banks shocked members of Parliament’s committee on Commissions Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises  (COSASE) when she told them that she still drives in the official car that was allocated to her when was still an employee of the Central bank.

In addition, BOU is also paying her driver and bodyguard.

The matter was brought to the attention of the committee by Kasilo MP Elijah Okupa who noted that despite the assurances given to committee by the Bank of Uganda governor Emmanuel Mutebile that all privileges accruing to Bagyenda would cease on December 31, 2018, she still enjoyed them.

MPs demanded to know who had approved what they termed as wastage and nugatory expenditure after 1st Jan 2019.

Initially, BOU had committed to incur the attendant costs till December 31, 2018 but the recent Board of Directors meeting resolved to extend the period to June 30.

The acting director for administration at BOU Dan Tibamwenda told the committee that owing to the unique nature of Bagyenda’s security situation where she feared for her life a bodyguard was assigned to her but when she was detained during the probe Bagyenda was assigned a BOU guard who had to use a government vehicle to ensure that she attends COSASE meetings.

Tibamwenda did not to satisfy MPs who roundly objected to it.

COSASE in session on Friday

MPs like Francis Mwijukye and Beatrice Anywar argued that it is her constitutional obligation to attend the probe with or without a govt vehicle or bodyguards.

This prompted Anita Among, the committee deputy chairperson to direct that Bagyenda hands back BOU property.

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

Among also ruled that all privileges be withdrawn and that the bank must compute and submit before the committee the amount of funds that have been illegally channeled to wasteful expenditure in this regard.