“Those who don’t know history are doomed to repeat it.” – Edmund Burke
The Uganda Communication Commission (UCC) must be a idle force of civil servants, a big bunch of lazy people who has very little to do or even trying to make up work. Because yesterday, a breaking news, which shouldn’t be breaking news is happening again.
The UCC and the Telecom Companies have had several of drives and issues with their SIM-Cards over the last few years. As the companies was even suspended from trading SIM-Cards for a while. That is what has happen. However, it is no returning. The UCC and National Resistance Movement (NRM) likes to toy around with the public and the Telecoms as they are fountains of funds, apparently.
In this spectrum, lets build a timeline before yesterday. The first deadline for registration of SIM-Cards was on 21st April 2017. Second deadline was on the 19th May 2017, but that wasn’t enough either. Because of that, it was postponed to the 22nd May 2017. Alas, that was not the finalization. The registration run continued until 30th August 2017. This was the final one of that SIM-Card Registration drive.
The issues in the last go around was between National Identification and Registration Authority (NIRA) with the National ID Number (NIN) activation on the SIM-Cards, as well as the technical difficulties with the UCC and the Telecoms. Therefore, as the OTT Tax is in play, the state should know, whose is who and know who pays the tax or not. The SIM-Cards should be registered in some sort of system already.
That was the issue of 2017. Now the UCC is revising this and reissuing the same sort of activity. For whatever reason they have. As they now did on the 29th March 2019. Why it is weird, is that the Telecoms had new guidelines selling the SIM-Cards from beginning of August 2017. Therefore, the need shouldn’t be there?
However, this is the latest: “The Uganda Communications Commission (UCC) has directed all telecom companies to verify the identity of their subscribers who hold multiple phone SIM cards” (91.2 Crooze FM, 29.03.2019).
Didn’t the new guidelines of August 2017 set the status clear of the ownership of the SIM-Cards, even if they have dozens of phones. The new guidelines from two years ago should have been proper and established the ownership. Especially, since all the SIM-Cards needs the NIN have to be registered now. Alas, that is apparently not the case.
How, bad can you do a job? Or how lazy are you, since you have to repeat it again? After reviewing and revising it, two years ago and tanking the Telecom Industry, because in the last go-around the state blocked the sale of the SIM-Cards. Therefore, expect something similar in this circus too. Expect it going back and fourth. Suddenly, the President will come with an final order combined with the Minister of ICT Frank Tumwebaze.
That is just how these things goes. The State House has to have a finale say, before the stamp of approval. Than, this saga might be close to end, before it returns to years later with a new modification. Peace.
Abdu Katuntu got to keep the position and chairman of the Parliament’s Commissions, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises (COSASE) on overtime to finish a report on the closure of 7 defunct banks in the Republic. He got the lifeline by the Speaker Rebecca Kagada in Parliament in January, as he wasn’t ready to deliver the report.
Katuntu as the MP who ran the committee decided on when to drop the report, which the report was dropped on the 19th February 2019. Now, today the IGG letter of the 19th February 2019 asked the Internal Security Organization (ISO) to look into the investigations and the possible kick-backs for a lenient report, which this was. The Report dropped was sleek, soft and guarded. Therefore, the question of what the COSASE is shielding or didn’t dig into could come into question.
If there was some bankers, some inside Bank of Uganda or anyone else of the Stakeholders of the defunct banks would enforce kick-backs to the Chairman and the Committee wouldn’t be surprising in relations to this is the Republic of Presidential Handshakes. In the Republic where the MPs are paid for voting in favour of favourable bills and motions of the Presidents agenda. Therefore, the initial idea of the IGG fits the state of affairs.
BUT, this is a hit-job, as this is leaked as the COSASE is getting new leadership, as the report has been delivered to the public and to the Parliament. The IGG and AG could act upon the work that Katuntu delivered. Nevertheless, there are more stakes at hand, as there are invisible hands overshadowing, as the cronies and investors, whose could be close to the President could be implicated. That is why the President was so adamant statements about the whole investigation and that it should have been done behind closed-doors. However, that didn’t happen.
Katuntu thought he did good, thought he delivered for the ones he made promises too. He thought with the extended time and promise of leverage, that he wouldn’t be hit. However, the President and his security organization is still on a vengeance. They are retaliating now, because the state suddenly looks into it. Because, the state is trying to save face.
It is weird timing that they are starting to investigate now, as they could have looked into the issues within the BoU before this, as there was plenty of banks closed wrongfully. Still, it didn’t matter then, but now it does. That looks weird and looks like a hit-job.
That Katuntu is now the latest victim… not the last, whose being used, tricked and later discarded. Peace.
Well, sooner or later this report was bound to happen as the deadline of the Parliament’s Commissions, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises (COSASE) report into 7 defunct banks in the Republic. It had to be interesting to see how the National Treasury or National Bank, the Bank of Uganda handled it, as the Bank have been going around all cowboy and not with protocol. As the proper guidance nor minutes have arrived to the COSASE as the months of investigations has gone on.
As well, the lack of trust between the parties, lawyers and stakeholders itself. Therefore, the report, had to stinking of it, the lack of due diligence and care for delivering proper craftsmanship, where the profession and their ethics are shining true.
Instead the process of investigation have shown utter contempt of honesty and transparency, as documents have gone missing and people have taken trips away, while they were supposed to testify to the Committee.
That is the introduction. Let’s dig into the mess, which was unleashed today on the 21st February 2019.
“The committee further observed that there are no documents relating to the post closure and management of Teefe Trust Bank assets and liabilities. This further complicates the process of winding up including resolving claims and some securities still in possession of the Central Bank” (COSASE, P: 9, 2019).
“No inventory report was availed in respect of ICB but an inception report for liquidation by the Liquidation Agcnt (KPMG) dated 30th September 2001” (…)”without a proper inventory report, BoU did not know what it was taking over in terms of entirety of assets and value. Accordingly, BoU acted in breach of section 32 (3), of the FIS, 1993” (COSASE, P: 10, 2019).
Sold on the Same Day:
What further the report states is that the National Bank of Commerce was closed and sold on the same day. This being done on the 27th September 2012. The takeover and sale took only 6 hours time and was in convention of the FIA. The same actions happen to Global Trust Bank (U) Limited, which was closed and sold on the same day, on the 25th July 2014. This was also done in convention of the FIA.
While on Crane Bank:
“The auditors produced the inventory report on 21st of December 2016 however, BoU had invited DFCU to bid for the purchase of assets and assumption of liabilities of CBL on 9nd December 2016 and subsequently DFCU submitted the bid on the 20th December 2016 a day before the production of the inventory report” (…) “BoU did not carry out valuation of the assets and liabilities of CBL. BUT relied on the inventory report and due diligence undertaken by DFCU to accept their bid to arrive at the P&A. However, the final inventory report was submitted on 13th January 2017. In essence, the final inventory report was never used in evaluating the bid for the purchase of assets and assumption of liabilities of CBL” (COSASE, P: 12 & 13, 2019).
Selling assets on discounts:
“In the case of ICB, Greenland Bank and Co-operative Brank, the total loan portfolio sold of UGX 135bn included secured loans of UGX 34.5bn which had valid legal or equitable mortgage on the real property and were supported with legal documentation BUT were sold, to M/s Nile River Acquisition Company at 93% discount” (…) “Whereas the GTB and NBC discount percentages of 20 and 30% respectively appear reasonable, the 93% discount in respect of the loan portfolio of ICB, Greenland Bank and Co-operative Bank acquired by M/s NRAC was incredibly outrageous” (COSASE, P: 23-24, 2019).
“The winding up process of all the defuct banks has taken an unjustifiably long time to settle creditor claims. For Teefe Trust Bank (26 years), Co-operative Bank (20 years), ICB (21 years), Greenland Bank (20 years), NBC (7 years), GTB (5 years) and CBL (2 years)!!! Regrettably, many of the creditors and shareholders have and indeed continue to die” (…) “Due to absence of documents, it was not possible to ascertain whether the UGX.9 1 .22bn used to settle customer claims of ICB, Cooperative bank and Greenland bank went to the bonafide beneficiaries. The absence of documents could among others be attributed to the long delay in concluding the winding up process” (COSASE, P: 39, 50 2019).
This is really just a proof of some of the mismanagement and quotes that proves how the Bank of Uganda didn’t do due diligence. They didn’t fix the issues, neither the work that was needed for the distressed financial institutions, the BoU didn’t follow the laws and statutes. All of the banks seems to be closed without protocol. Without proper documentation, neither overlooking assets and the securities.
Therefore, the Bank of Uganda … have not acted as the Central Bank and having the supervisory role over the financial market. They have surely acted in ill-will and not like they are supposed too. If not, these seven banks shouldn’t been closed like this, even closed and sold within 24 hours. Peace.