Opposition Forum for Democratic Change [FDC] Secretary General, Hon Nandala Mafabi, has renewed his call for the arrest and detention of Bank of Uganda governor, Tumusiime Mutebile, and all his subordinates.
Mafabi reiterated his call on Thursday night while appearing on NBS TV “Frontline” programme to discuss the Crane bank saga and age limit amendment debacle.
“This isn’t my first time to be here talking about Crane Bank,” Mafabi told the programme host, Charles Odongotho, adding, “the last time I said governor of Bank of Uganda should have been in Luzira prison and I still insist.”
At the close of last year, Mafabi who was enraged by depressed status of the economy if he had the power, he would arrest all Bank of Uganda (BOU) officials.
“Where were they when things were going wrong at Crane Bank?” Mafabi wondered, exonerating the proprietor Sudhir Ruparelia and his company.
“It is Bank of Uganda! They have simply looked on. Crane Bank made a 7.3bn loss last year . There’s an entity that made a loss which is now being transferred on the bank.”
He said Bank of Uganda (BOU) has never examined Crane Bank’s expansion before putting it under receivership, suggesting that Uganda Revenue Authority [URA] should also be investigated for the mess at Crane Bank.
Last night, Mafabi said the statement issued by central bank claiming they had sued Sudhir for embezzling Shs400bn is meant to hoodwink the public that this matter is in court.
“If Sudhir is a thief, he should be in court already. BoU officials who have been making due diligence that Crane Bank was doing well should be arrested.”
Mafabi said Sudhir has many investments abroad and that what he has here is in fact less and it’s Ugandans’ money.
“The Speke Resort Munyonyo you are talking about, government owns like 10%. Because of bad accounting, he claimed that he invested more.”
Meanwhile, the state-run New Vision says Sudhir has agreed to surrender some of his prime properties to the Bank of Uganda in order to settle the Shs400b bank fraud case out of court.
Clashes with Matembe
However, former Ethics and Integrity minister, Hon. Miria Matembe revealed that the FDC Secretary General was rumoured to be lobbying for job of BoU Governor which Mafabi vehemently denied.
“Matembe said I was looking for a job as governor BoU; I want her to bring evidence. She is bringing it up now that there’s an election coming,” Mafabi lashed out.
Matembe replied: “I’m not in your party. I don’t even know about the elections. I will raise more, better leave me alone.”
According to Matembe, the irregularities about Sudhir finally come out and he should be held accountable.
“I heard that he used to lend money to people and then disappear. I’m now starting to believe that there is some truth in everything we have been hearing about Sudhir.”
Matembe declared Bank of Uganda a whistle blower in this Crane Bank saga, saying “if we are saying this fraud had collaborators and mafia, I would prefer to pursue for a criminal case. I would like to see revelation of evidence concerning anybody who collaborated in this scam”.
According to Matembe, when Pius Bigirimana was declared whistle blower, there were some investigations and arrests were made in the office of the Prime Minister.
“So if BoU is the whistle blower in this case, an investigation should be instituted into the whole affair.”
Lawyer Robert Kirunda, was to the contrary, confident that BoU is going to recover the money Sudhir allegedly stole from Crane bank.
“It’s has taken many years for Crane Bank to fall but it’s going to take a very short time for a big bank to fall,” Kirunda stated.