Mutebile Debate Splits NRM caucus

1471 Views Kampala, Uganda

In short
NRM members of parliament have failed to reach consensus on the fate of Emmanuel Mutebile, governor of Bank of Uganda.

NRM members of parliament have failed to reach consensus on the fate of Emmanuel Mutebile, governor of Bank of Uganda. On Wednesday, the NRM Mps were summoned to an impromptu caucus meeting to decide a common position on Mutebile. MPs who spoke to URN on condition of anonymity say that during the meeting some of the members suggested the caucus adopts the position of cabinet subcommittee that cleared Mutebile of any wrong doing.
 
However, some of the MPs rejected this saying Mutebile must be punished just like Ministers Syda Bumba and Khiddu Makubuya were forced to resign for their role in their controversial compensation of Hassan Bassajjabalaba. Efforts by the cabinet subcommittee members to plead with the legislator to adopt its position didn’t go down well with some legislators.
 
Cerinah Nebanda, Butaleja District Woman Member of parliament who attended the caucus meeting insists that Mutebile must be sacked because there is nothing special with him.  Nebanda also refuses to accept the argument that Mutebile is the only person capable of running bank of Uganda that was being advanced in the caucus meeting to save him.
 
 On Wednesday morning, Karooro Okurut, NRM spokesperson said that Mutebile would not be forced to give up his job. She however, didn’t divulge details saying that the matter would be discussed by the NRM caucus and later parliament.  However, Okurut has not yet issued a statement on the outcome of the caucus meeting.
 
Efforts to reach both Okurut and Evelyn Anite, the NRM caucus spokesperson didn’t yield any results as they neither picked not returned out calls. Mutebile is accused of writing a letter of comfort to Orient and United Bank of Africa guaranteeing him that Bank of Uganda would pay him as a soon as the budget is approved. He is also accused of failing to involve the bank of Uganda board and staff when he was committing the central bank on behalf of Haba Group of companies.
 
It is not clear how the MPs intend to force out Mutebile, since the constitution mandates the president to sack him but Museveni looks reluctant to push him. Article 161 of the constitution outlines the circumstances under which the governor may be removed from office. They include inability to perform the functions of his office as a result of insanity, misconduct or incompetence. This morning, Mutebile assured Ugandans that he is not about to be sacked. The NRM meets again on Monday next week to harmonize its position before the matter comes up for debate in parliament on Tuesday.