Central Bank Overhaul Halts Amidst Staff Petition and Accusations of In-fighting

Dr Michael Atingi-Ego, the deputy governor of Bank of Uganda. PHOTO/HANDOUT

The Bank of Uganda’s planned restructuring has taken a dramatic turn, with an internal power struggle leading to a pause in the implementation of the overhaul. Aggrieved staff members have petitioned President Museveni, accusing the Deputy Governor, Dr. Michael Atingi-Ego, of implementing changes without considering the input of bank executives and disregarding good practices of corporate governance.

The restructuring, based on recommendations by consulting firm KPMG, was designed to modernize the financial sector regulator and align it with the country’s new socio-economic transformation goals. However, concerns arose that the process was intended to purge loyalists of the late Governor, Emmanuel Tumusiime-Mutebile, resulting in merged, eliminated, or downgraded positions for many employees.

Bank officials have refuted the claims, stating that the process was all-inclusive and followed established rules and internal systems to address staff complaints. Despite this, the overhaul remains paused until the newly constituted Board investigates the grievances and finds a resolution.

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The restructuring aimed to focus on environmental, social, and governance standards, encouraging commercial banks to invest in sustainable agriculture, climate change reversals, and catering to lower-income categories. However, the proposed changes have stirred discontent among some employees, leading to accusations of unfair demotions and arbitrary staff placements.

The central bank’s current leadership structure has also come under scrutiny, as Dr. Michael Atingi-Ego simultaneously occupied the roles of Deputy Governor, Governor, and Chair of the Board, following the death of the previous Governor. The petitioners call for the prompt appointment of a substantive Governor to restore stability to the institution.

President Museveni’s office has responded by stating that the internal wrangling at the bank is not the President’s responsibility and that the Deputy Governor is not above the law. The delay in naming a new Governor has further fueled tensions, with the petitioners seeking decisive action to address the turmoil.

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The future of the Bank of Uganda’s restructuring remains uncertain as the Board investigates the claims and seeks a resolution. The situation highlights the importance of transparency, governance, and communication in major organizational changes to maintain confidence and stability in critical financial institutions.


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