By our reporter
Only President Museveni can overrule the National Social Security Fund board who recommended the sacking of Geraldine Ssali Busuulwa from her job as deputy managing director.
Finance Minister Matia Kasaija is expected to endorse the recommendations of the board which plans to keep Richard Byarugaba as MD and Richard Wabwire as corporation secretary. The board was satisfied with their performance and it was not impressed with the record of the deputy, Geraldine.
However, the board made a strange recommendation too. It decided to recruit the deputy internally, according to sources this website has spoken to, not through a competitive process as it has been the case in the past since the offices of MD, deputy and corporate secretary are statutory.
Like we have said in our earlier stories, the NSSF board has been uncomfortable with Geraldine Ssali’s work methods, and for that matter, only her among the top executive is losing her job. The board will not say she failed to execute her mandate, but anyway, it has the statutory duty to renew or not one’s contract. Ms Ssali has lost that plot. The board won. Unless President Museveni thinks otherwise, and he pushes the minister to veto the board’s recommendation, which is unlikely, this time round.
So, we would like to poke our noses in who the board is eyeing to replace Ssali as deputy MD.
1. Richard Wejuli Wabwire.
The most qualified person, owing to his experience at the Fund would be Mr Wabwire, the corporation secretary. His job makes him No.3 at the organization and moving to No.2 would be a promotion.
Wabwire is a close associate of MD Byarugaba and get along well. In throwing Ssali through the ventilator, the board hopefully wants top managers who have a good working relationship. Wabwire would be on top of the ticket had the board not locked him out technically. His contract has been renewed alongside Byarugaba’s and they are continuing in their respective positions. Possibly the board has other thoughts.
2. Patrick Ayote
Patrick Ayote is currently the head of Finance. As head of finance, he is one of the members of the Exco (executive committee). The Fund is most importantly about numbers and as Finance, he knows the financial health of the organization.
In fact, Ayote has applied for this job before. And guess what, he emerged the top in the interviews which were to recruit a new MD and Deputy before former Finance Minister Maria Kiwanuka threw in the towel. His chances were ruined when Richard Byarugaba was returned as MD and Geraldine Ssali told to return to her job as deputy.
Ayote returned to his finance docket quietly. And life moved on.
Meanwhile, Ayote is not part of Byarugaba’s inner circle at NSSF and given the warm relationship between the MD and board chairman Mr Patrick Byabakama Kaberenge, Ayote despite his qualifications might not land this more juicy job, because, there is someone else.
3. Jean Mutabazi
Jean Mutabazi has been head of compliance. Compliance is an important part of the NSSF set up. Recently, she has also been acting as head of operations.
Whereas Jean is not officially part of the EXCO, she seems likely to replace Ms Ssali.
Our analysts at the ministry of Finance say fast rising Jean is likely to be deputy MD owing to a number of reasons including the female slot at the Fund’s top as well as the confident and trust she enjoys from the MD. Of course, she is also qualified got deputy MD’s job, our courses say.
In our analysis, given the kind of working relationship the NSSF board wants at the Workers House based Fund is to have Byarugaba with right-hand people who are able to agree on the “strategic direction” of the Fund in the coming couple of years, including overseeing the multibillion Lubowa housing project.