Tiwa Savage, Wizkid all at the UBA 70 years Celebration in Nigeria

By Edwin Muhumuza

United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc celebrated 70 years of operations . The platinum anniversary was combined with the bank’s annual CEO awards ceremony as members of staff from all 23 countries of operations who had excelled over the past year were rewarded in the midst of thousands of guests.

The Chairman, UBA Plc, Mr. UBA Celebrates 70 years with CEO Awards gala, accompanied by his wife Dr. Awele, remarked that UBA remains a leading financial institution on the continent and hitting the 70th year mark was a laudable achievement.

He said, “It is a time to celebrate UBA’s rich heritage and legacy over 70 years and to tell everyone who has contributed to what UBA is today, that we appreciate all they have been doing and how they have ensured that the investment put into the bank over the past decades have paid off.”

The Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Kennedy Uzoka, spoke about the banks’ achievements over the past 70 years and some of its objectives for the coming years, commending staff for their hard work and resilience that have contributed to UBA retaining its position as Africa’s top bank of choice.

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“Every year, it is our tradition to appreciate our people who have put in their very best and gone far and beyond the call of duty to deliver excellent services to our customers and this year is even more exciting as we celebrate 70 years of our existence.

From Uganda, Chief Dealer, Isaac Kasozi Iga scooped an Award of Excellence for his remarkable contribution as one of the main revenue contributors to the Group.

Chairman of Zenith bank, Jim Ovia ,commended the management and staff of the bank, adding that UBA remains one of the greatest banks in Sub Saharan Africa and is built to last. He congratulated all staff and shareholders noting that he should have bought UBA shares but it was not too late to do that.

In attendance at the epic night of activities, were royal fathers, captains of industry, political leaders, clients and friends of the bank. Some of the guests present were the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye, Enitan Ogunwusi; the Emir of Kano represented by the Sarkin Shanun of Kano, Alhaji Shehu Mohammed; Former and Present Governors of Cross Rivers State.Former Presidents Olusegun Obasanjo and Ibrahim Babaginda who could not attend the event sent in letters of congratulations to commend the bank on its landmark achievements.

At the celebrations, the story of UBA was depicted in the Tony Award winning Broadway musical of the Lion King. Serengeti depicts the story of the young cub who grew into a strong Lion, in spite of the odds, and empowered all the other animals in the jungle. Great performances by A-list artists such as ‘science students’ crooner, Olamide, Phyno,Patoranking, Dbanj and female sensation, Tiwa Savage entertained the audience of over 2500 guests. The surprise act which ended the night on a high, was the performance by award winning Nigerian artist, Wizkid.

Equity bank extends to rural areas to help youth

By Edwin Muhumuza

Equity Bank Uganda and DYNAMIC-(Driving Youth-Led Agribusiness and Microenterprise) program have launched a partnership to bring access to formal financial services closer to the youth through Equity’s Bank’s agency banking and digital finance model,equi-duuka.

Executive Director Equity Bank, Anthony Kituuka while speaking to Capital Radio,noted that they will be targeting 126,000 youth in nine districts in Northern Uganda including Agago,Kabong, Lira ,Abim and others. He added that ‘Equity has a financial structure , the money to lend if they want to borrow, capability to train them and using Equi-Duuka’s as our agency banking model to plant Equi-duukas everywhere and have the banks financial services accessible to farmers .’he said.

Agriculture is traditionally and has been a no–go area for many commercial banks in Uganda due to the immense risk associated with farming. This on account of poor farming methods, unreliability of markets and uncertain weather patterns

However Kituuka said that they see opportunity in northern Uganda especially, peace, flat terrain of land as well as rain. ‘We will ensure partnerships that link farmers to processors and markets, transforming farmers from small holders to agribusiness while engaging youth aged between 15-24 years.This in various aspects for example in research ,finding markets, improving farm techniques, access to financial services. Now Goal has the largest pool of youth whom they want to get engaged in gainful employment.’

GOAL Uganda, Country Director ,Jennifer Williams said that the growing youth population in Uganda is a great opportunity for the country’s economic development. ‘Creating decent and dignified employment and self-employment for this young population is our main objective in DYNMAIC program. The partnership with Equity Bank will definitely help to achieve this objective” she said.

DYNAMIC Program Director Netsaalem Gebrie noted that the partnership is meant to increase financial inclusion in northern Uganda and as a program they want to ensure increase in youth employment through providing whole skill training, vocational training ensuring

The head of Agency Banking, Julius Musiime when asked about the uncertinities such venture is likely to face said they were prepared for the risks because of the experience obtained at group level in Kenya,even in other areas of Uganda including Kasese with cotton, northern Uganda in Atiak with Sugarcanes. ‘Our role is to ensure that we support them and there is also a bit of financial literacy, connecting them to agricultural extension workers to ensure they embrace the best practices as well as markets to ensure that all their produce is sold. We are seeing it as an opportunity.’ He said.The total value of investment in the partnership is over Shs.200million.

Ugandans dissatisfied with COSASE

By Edwin Muhumuza

Debate on the COSASE report starts this Tuesday (26 February) on the floor of parliament amid high expectations that maybe officials implicated by the probe will be brought to book. What the public is demanding for already are the heads of the culprits.

When it was finally completed and read to the house a section of the public said it had promised too much but only to deliver too little.

While appearing on the Capital Gang Radio Show, Chairperson Abdu Katuntu expressed disgust that members of the public did not appreciate the role of other state institutions. This was in response to claims that his report was toothless and that culprits would walk away free as had been noted in other previous parliamentary reports especially the oil handshake report.

…‘a parliamentary committee report goes to the house where it may be adopted, dismissed or amended. When you have government institutions, they work in accordance with the law. Why we talk about the rule of law is to have different institutions perform different roles. Do not expect a parliament of a republic or a parliament of any country to start having the powers to prosecute or arrest. What will the Judiciary do, Katuntu argued!’

In 2017, Ugandans were angry that 36 government officials shared Shs.6 billion oil bonus code-named the “golden presidential handshake” by officials from the Justice ministry, Uganda Revenue Authority (URA), Ministry of Finance among others. It was this same committee that probed the saga and in public view nothing has been done about the officials. This was one of the issues that Katuntu had to explain in recent weeks amid intense criticism from sections within his FDC party including his successor MP Mubarak Munyagwa for what they said was incompetence during his two and a half tenure as COSASE Chairman.

Now another major report is due for debate by public representatives and the question being asked is what will the discussion help if nothing may be done to those the report seems to indict?

Katuntu says, ‘our focus was in the actions more than individuals because at the end of the day there are state agencies that should be able to take up the individuals. What we did was to say, look here, actually, we used two words deliberately, the officers and officials who participated in this process should take full and personal responsibility. That covers their actions but we imagine that other state agencies now go and look at exactly who handled this process’.

For over two months, Bank Of Uganda (BOU), officials led by the governor Tumusiime Mutebile appeared before the committee chaired by the Bugweri County MP to answer to queries raised by the auditor general’s confidential special audit report which revealed weaknesses in the management of Central Bank and questioned the Governor and his team for the hitches in the closure of at least seven commercial banks.

The sale of Crane Bank, however seemed to have opened a can of worms after the proprietor businessman Sudhir Ruparelia accused Bank of Uganda of being unfair. Crane Bank was a commercial bank licensed and supervised by the Bank of Uganda, the national banking regulator with total assets‎ amounting to approximately ‎UGX 1.81 trillion employing over 600 staff.

This was a much bigger financial entity compared to the other defunct banks and certainly had to attract immense public attention including the media. In his new report to Parliament, the Auditor General, Mr John Muwanga, queried BoU officials on the flaws in the closure of Teefe Bank (1993), International Credit Bank Ltd (1998), Greenland Bank (1999), The Co-operative Bank (1999), National Bank of Commerce (2012), Global Trust Bank (2014) and the sale of Crane Bank Ltd (CBL) to dfcu (2016)

Most Ugandans are aware that the closure of Crane Bank by Bank of Uganda was illegal, what remains to be seen is what happens to the culprits that were engaged in this illegality and whether other agencies such as the Inspectorate of Government, the ministry of Finance, Criminal Investigations Department of Police will bite.

Girls miss out on education due to cultural beliefs

By Daudi Zirimala
The ministry of Education and Sports says that many girls have not benefited from government programmes educating every child in Uganda because of the cultural beliefs and perceptions.

Speaking during the national Symposium on Girl Education in Uganda which runs under the theme, ‘Reflecting on the gains and setting the agenda for girls Education’, the state minister for Higher Education DR.JC Muyingo many people are still have cultural beliefs that women are meant to get married and start producing children which has denied many girls chance to be educated.

Muyingo says that government wants more girls entering university and tap into professions like ICT, Engineering, Law among others but many of them are deterred from joing university due to cultural belief which he says should be reverted.

The United Nations Girls’ Education Initiative (UNGEI) reported that more than 700,000 girls in Uganda between the ages of six to 12 have never attended school. In fact, around half of girls between the ages of 15 to 24 are illiterate and four in five girls do not attend high school.

A large contributor to low female literacy rates and school attendance rates is that up to 40 percent of girls in Uganda are married before the age of 18.

Around 10 percent of these girls are married before the age of 15. Around 35 percent of girls drop out due to marriage and 23 percent drop out due to pregnancy. In contrast, allowing girls to continue through secondary education significantly reduces the chances of early marriage and childbearing.

UTB, tourism police crack down another fraudster

By Edwin Muhumuza
Kampala, Uganda. February 2, 2019. In another operation with the aid of Tourism Police, Mr. Didan Atukunda from Mamba Gorilla Safari has been arrested for declining to pay back an erroneous payment made by a tourist.

Mr. Atukunda was arrested in a bar in Kabale at 2am by the Tourism Police Regional commandant- Kigezi region, ASP Tinka Emmanuel. The tourist erroneously paid $30.000 instead of $3000 for a trip to trek Gorillas and Mr. Atukunda declined to make the $27,000 refund; forcing the tourist to contact the Uganda Tourism Board. Prior attempts by UTB to discuss and agree to a payment plan between Mr. Atukunda and the touris proved futile leading to the involvement of Tourism Police in a crackdown for Mr. Atukunda’s arrest.
He is currently enroute Kampala from Kabale and will be detained at Jinja Road police station awaiting hearing.

The Uganda Tourism Board through its Quality Assurance department is taking strong interventions to curb crime in the sector.

According to the UTB, Quality Assurance Manager Mr. Samora Semakula, UTB has set up a Tourism security committee consisting of Tourism Police, MTWA and representation from the Association of Uganda Tour Operators with the let aim of tactfully handling fraud and any cases reported by tourists.
Tourism is Uganda’s number one foreign exchange earner. We can not continue to let rogue operators destabilise the growth that we are seeing in the sector. Most importantly we want tourists to enjoy their stay in Uganda. Our role is to ensure quality standards are met in the sector.” Mr.Semakula said.

This brings the number of rogue your operators so far arrested this year to two. In a separate operation, Tourism Police and UTB cracked down and arrested Mr. Mugerwa Ahebwa who
defrauded American tourists of over $18,000. He is currently detained at Jinja Road police station awaiting hearing.

“We shall continue to crackdown rogue operators,”Mr. Semakula reinforces . The tourism industry currently contributes 10 per cent to gross domestic product, making it Uganda’s leading foreign exchange earner. The industry contributes more than $1.4b (Shs5.1 trillion) annually and is projected to earn about Shs10 trillion ($2.7b) by 2020.

About the Uganda Tourism Board
Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) is a statutory organisation established in 1994. Its role and mandate was reviewed in the Tourism Act of 2008. The Board's mandate is to promote and market Uganda across the region and internationally, promote quality assurance in tourist facilities through training, grading and classification, promote tourism investment, support and act as liaison for the private sector in tourism development. The broader goals of the Board are to increase the contribution of tourism earnings and GDP; improve Uganda’s competitiveness as an international tourism destination; and increase Uganda's share of Africa's and World tourism market. UTB aims to create inclusive opportunities for the tourism sector through market transformation.

Bakaluba Ramathan is the winner: In the Capital FM Win A Car promo

By Gloria Nakiyemba

Bakaluba Ramathan is the winner of brand new Mark II Grande car. Ramathan was announced winner after a draw held at Kisementi based radio station on Thursday.

Capital Radio GM Peter Mungoma snipping the ruffle in the Win A Car Pro 2018/19
Capital Radio GM Peter Mungoma snipping the ruffle in the Win A Car Pro 2018/19

The draw was conducted by Peter Mongoma station general manager live On Air during the Drive Show with of Taatu and Olanya. The general manager commended all companies that partnered with Capital radio to run this promotion for a period of two months.

Bakaluba Ramathan is the winner : Interview live on The Capital FM Drive Show with Tattu And Oulanyah
Bakaluba Ramathan is the winner : Interview live on The Capital FM Drive Show with Tattu And Oulanyah

Mr. Bakaluba told the Tattu and Oulanya live in a phone interview that he entered the draw after buying Air Conditioners from one of the partners Hisense in Wankoko industrial area.

Kanyamunyu pleads not guilty, trial date set

By Sania Babirye
Mathew Kanyamunyu together with his girlfriend Cynthia Munwangari and his brother Joseph Kanyamunyu have pleaded not guilty to killing social worker Kenneth Akena in November 2016.

The three have appeared alongside other 50 capital offenders in a criminal session presided over by Justice Steven Mubiru.

Joseph Kanyamunyu has also pleaded not guilty to the charge of being an accessory to murder after he allegedly removed a pistol that was allegedly used to shot Akena from Matthew Kanyamunyu’s car at Nakasero hospital were they first rushed the victim for medical attention.

The judge has now set the 21st of January 2019 to start hearing the case.

Kanyamunyu’s girlfriend and also co accused Munwangari has asked for a french interpreter since she is not fluent in the English language.

The judge has also extended their bail applications until then.

Meanwhile, Kanyamunyu and his co accused have hired a team of lawyers led by senior criminal lawyer McDusman Kabega, Caleb Alaka and Evans Ochenge to see that they are set free.

On the 31st of January 2017, the Nakawa court grade one magistrate Noah Sajabi committed Kanyamunyu and his co accused to the High court for trial on the orders of the Director of public prosecutions.
According to the DPP, there is sufficient evidence to prove that on the 12th of November 2016 along Jinja Highway in Kampala district opposite the Uganda manufacturers association Matthew Kanyamunyu shot Akena for accidentally scratching his car.

According to the summary of prosecution’s evidence Matthew and Cynthia claim that they were good Samaritans who helped to rush the late Akena to hospital after unknown person shot him which state is contesting.

The DPP also separately charged Joseph Kanyamunyu with being an accessory after the commission of an offense accusing him of hiding his brothers pistol that was used in the offense. .
Prosecution states that on the 12th if November 2016, Kanyamunyu while driving along with his lover Munwangari at night got into an argument with social worker Akena whom he accused of scratching his car and shot him three times in the stomach.

Kanyamunyu is later said to have disguised as a good Samaritan and rushed injured Akena to Novirk Hospital on Bombo road where he died shortly .

However, Akena is said to have left a dying declaration implicating Mathew Kanyamunyu as his shooter.

Prosecution says it intends to prove the dying declaration through Health workers at Norvik hospital who talked to the deceased before passing away.

The three were granted bail in October 2017 after spending one year and nine months on remand at Luzira prison.

Police calls out survivors of the Lake Victoria boat accident to testify

By Robert Ssegawa

Day six Police and UPDF Marine teams continue with the search of possible missing persons and property following the boat accident on L.Victoria is still on going. So far two outboard engines, the metallic part of canopy that had submerged into the lake at the scene of accident of the MV Templar wreckage have been recovered and delivered offshore.

The wreckage of the boat that was retrieved yesterday, 33 people confirmed dead where the actual numbers of those missing still not known.

On Wednesday police called on MV Kabalega to help in retrieving the killer boat after trying with local fishermen manually to pull the wreckage. The police director of operations Asuman Mugyenyi has asked the survivors to come out and give their testimony to help in investigating the matter.

“We call upon the survivors to come out in good faith and give their testimony, you are not suspects only we want to verify the claims from the public whether the number on boat were correct or wrong ,says Mugyenyi.

He adds that police needs to get even more truth of the survivors, as intelligence shows that very many people survived and they don’t want to come out though police has a list of big people who are known to board the boat are still hiding.

Mugyenyi further explains that the intention is in good faith to exactly know how many people are still missing. Last week over 100 revellers board MV Templar to Palm Beach in Mukono and capsized left over 30 people dead and 26 were rescued that very night.

Shumuk charged with forgery of documents defrauding Bonny Katatumba

By Sania Babirye

A Kampala businessman Mukesh Shukla commonly known as Shumuk has been charged before Buganda Road Court with charges relating to forgery of documents with an intention of defrauding the late Pakistan Consulate to Uganda; Bonny Katatumba of his Hotel Diplomate situated at Muyenga -a Kampala Surberb.

Mukesh; who is the Chief Executive Director of Shumuk Aluminium industries Ltd spent a night at Jinja Road police station having been arrested yesterday on allegations of forging a letter and signatures including that of George Karyegira; the head of security in the office of the Justice justice Bart Katureebe.

Mukesh allegedly in 2017 uttered the said documents/letters to Makindye Cheif magistrates court purporting it was a proof of the official hand over of Hotel Diplomat to him by the owner Bonny Katutumba, his sons and daughters whereas not.

He has however pleaded not guilty to the 13 counts before Grade one magistrate Stellah Amabilisi and who has granted him a cash bail of 3 million shillings having presented 3 sureties who are his longtime business friends that court has also found substantial enough to compel his return to court on the 26th/November 2018.

Police and Military police have cordoned Ibrahim Ssemuju Nganda’s home this Morning

Police and Military police today morning have cordoned off the home of Kira municipality member of parliament Ibrahim Ssemuju Nganda.

This comes ahead of the planned consultative rally by the legislator in his constituency this evening at Bweyogerere expected to attract different opposition members. Speaking to Capital radio Ssemujju who is still in hiding in his house says he had written to police earlier but the officer’s who stormed his home told him he notified them late.

Ssemujju who escaped arrest by security personnel who used police patrol to jump into his compound to arrest him, but managed to escape vows to go on with his consultative rally at Bweyogerere this evening come rain come shine.

According to sources from police, the venue where Hon Ssemujju want to hold his rally, is the same venue Cape Verde national team used for training ahead of tomorrow’s match with Uganda Cranes. Luke Owoyesigyire the Kampala metropolitan police spokesperson says police advised the legislator to change the venue of the rally because some activities are going on in the area.

Owoyesigyire adds that police administration didn’t give him go a. head to continue with his planned rally, but they are still waiting to write and inform them about the new venue he chooses for today’s rally.

Hon Ssemujju adds that they stormed his home this morning because I have a public rally today.’I notified them on Monday, they received a letter on 12th November 2018 and signed it, but they are saying they received it on 15th Thursday which is not true, Ssemujju wondered.

He adds that he showed them a copy signed by a director in charge of operations AIGP Asuman Mugyenyi, they refused and go on with their plans of arresting me until they used their patrol car to jump into my compound with intention of arresting me, but I escaped and hiding inside my house says Ssemujju.

He, however, adds that under public order management bill, he is required to notify police where is the rally not to Grant him permission.

In August this year police have surrounded the homes of opposition politicians and lawyers these are former FDC president Dr. Kizza Besigye, Allan Ssewanyana, Lord mayor Elias Lukwago, Ingrid Tirinawe, after police received information that they plan to invite people to riot over a court hearing for detained opposition lawmakers Hon Robert Kyagulanyi and 4 other politicians arrested over Arua by-election.