By our reporter
Following the leaked agreement showing how top Bank of Uganda officials connived with Dfcu Bank to fraudulently takeover Crane Bank, Auditor General John Muwanga has shortlisted five top audit firms to investigate Bank of Uganda operations which led to the fraudulent takeover of Crane Bank.
The successful company will work with a team of forensic experts from the Office of Auditor General led by Forensics Director James Bantu.
Mr. Muwanga’s move comes at a time after being tasked by Parliament’s Committee on Commissions, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises (COSASE) to carry out a broad forensic audit into the operations of the Central bank and demand accountability of Shs200 billion, which was injected into the collapsing Crane Bank before it was sold off to dfcu Bank.
Before being taken over, government first injected shs200 billion to capitalize Crane Bank after claims by BoU that it was on a verge of collapse due to under-capitalization.
But government’s efforts were rendered fruitless since in one way on the other some of the top Central Bank officials had their hidden motives and plans to sell the once third biggest commercial bank in the country.
Prior, the former Crane Bank shareholders and unidentified BoU staff had already petitioned COSASE demanding for an accountability of Shs200 billion given to BoU Governor Emmanuel Mutebile in 2016 to manage the affairs of Crane Bank.
The aggrieved Crane Bank shareholders called for a full inquiry into the alleged mismanagement of Crane Bank under BoU control.
The Crane Bank shareholders particularly told COSASE that the sale agreement did not state the value of assets and liabilities given to Dfcu Bank not forgetting the unfair terms.
The leaked sale agreement, stated that Dfcu acquired Crane Bank with assets valued at Sh1.3 trillion for just shs200 billion.
The Agreement did not state the amounts of money paid by Dfcu as a net purchase price; or the payment terms for monies, or the assets (outside branches) that Dfcu was taking over.
The agreement which excluded shareholders of Crane Bank contrary to the Financial Institutions Act, also did not itemize the list of assets acquired (save for leases).
According to Daily Monitor, the spokesperson for the Auditor General’s office, Gloria Namugera, confirmed the forensic investigation into BoU and said the audit process is ongoing.
“All those issues will be captured in our report to Parliament. The audit will be within the confines of the law. The National Audit Act is very clear on the mandate of the Auditor General. We will analyse the new issues and see how to incorporate them in the expanded audit into bank of Uganda,” said Ms. Namugera.