PARLIAMENT – The Chairperson of the Committee of Commissions, Statutory Authority and State Enterprises (COSASE), Abdu Katuntu has warned the management of Bank of Uganda against handling the security issue of the Central Bank as a casual matter.
Katuntu’s remarks were in response to the meeting held between Bank of Uganda officials and the Committee where the former Executive Director, Banking Supervision, Justine Bagyenda was grilled on allegations that she took bags of unknown items from the Bank without passing through the Bank’s security systems.
Katuntu used the moment to rebuke the casual way the staff at Bank of Uganda are handling the security of the Central Bank saying there is need to take the matter more seriously.
“The issue of security of Bank of Uganda is very important. We think that institution should be as secure as secure as actually State House, why because you know it better. To have this sort of casual way entering a Central Bank, leaving a Central Bank carrying suitcases of what we don’t know without going through the security system can’t be accepted in any central bank,” Katuntu said.
He added; “We have had an opportunity to visit some Central Banks and we know what happens. It goes beyond Bagyenda’s incidence, it is about that institution as a Bank. At 10 am tomorrow, get in touch with Clerk you review the CCTV, clerk will organise a place and we shall take over that conversation.”
During the meeting, Bagyenda pushed the blame to her bodyguard Juliet Adikolet and Driver Dan Turyahebwa after she feigned ignorance on whether the items she carried outside of the bank had gone through the security check.
Katuntu asked Bagyenda; “Were you checked? You have known this issue since you came, you know very well that we had referred staff for further criminal investigation,” to which she replied saying, “I was in the office when those bags were carried, so I need to look at the CCTV,” Bagyenda said.
Lubaga South MP, Moses Kasibante probed Bagyenda’s statement further pointing out that; “You have admitted bags were carried then you are saying you want to look at CCTV. Is it that you don’t know how the bags were carried? What exactly want to see from the footage that you can’t still have in your memory?”
Bagyenda maintained her stand saying she wouldn’t commit to a definite answer as she is still on oath, “I was seated in office when those bags went via security, I cannot say whether they were checked or not until I see the CCTV,” said Bagyenda.