Labour office directs Post Bank to reinstate suspended top bosses

Thursday October 24 2019

Reinstate. The Kampala Labour Officer wants Post Bank to reinstate four top managers, who were suspended on allegations of fraud and abuse of office. FILE PHOTO

The Kampala Labour Office, under the jurisdiction of Kampala Capital City Authority, has directed Post Bank to reinstate four top managers, who were suspended pending disposal of cases against them at the Anti-Corruption Court.

The four including Mr Stephen Mukweli, the Post Bank managing director, Ms Safina Wabuna, the bank’s ICT executive director, Mr David Mwesige, the head of Information Technology and Mr Fred Samuel Wasike, the bank’s head of business growth, were suspended following a raid on Post Bank by Edith Nakalema’s State House Anti-Corruption Unit.

The raid followed allegations of corruption, abuse of office and influence peddling that had been brought to the attention of the State House Anti-Corruption Unit.
In a September 19 ruling issued by the Kampala Labour Office, it was declared that the suspension was illegal, ordering that those affected must be reinstated in their positions.

The Kampala Labour Office, which enjoys unlimited jurisdiction on matter related to labour rights, among others also ruled that the four senior managers must be paid their full salaries for the period of suspension and all arrears due to them.

Hounded out of office
The matter, which had come up for final disposal before Mr Emmanuel Mukiza Rubasha, followed complaints lodged by the four senior managers raising concern on the manner in which they were hounded out of office in total disregard of their labour rights and entitlements.

The four have been on suspension from April and the labour officer found that the: “Suspension of the complainants by Post Bank Uganda Limited with half pay beyond the initial four weeks is illegal.”
The judgment, which Daily Monitor has seen, also ruled that the: “The indefinite suspension is hereby revoked,” directing that the four managers should be “reinstated in their respective positions of employment immediately.”


The labour officer further directed that the four managers must be paid all their salary arrears that were deducted as well as the benefits that were withdrawn during the suspension period (beginning around May).
This, the ruling directed, should be done within seven days from the date of the ruling.
However, according to sources, who declined to be named because they don’t speak for Post Bank, the ruling has not been effected.

The four senior managers were also directed to proceed to the Industrial Court to file a demand for general and punitive damages and the cost of the complaint.
Yesterday, Ms Justine Wabwire, the Post Bank company secretary, said she was aware of the ruling but declined to comment further, referring Daily Monitor to Arcadia Advocates, the bank’s external law firm, who she said were handling the matter.

However, efforts to get a comment from Arcadia were futile as a one Hope from the law firm declined to share details of the lawyer handling the case.

The background

About six months ago, seven top Post Bank officials were charged with fraud following arrest by the Edith Nakalema’s State House Anti-Corruption Unit.
The suspects appeared before the Anti-Corruption Court and were charged with abuse of office, causing financial loss and conspiracy to defraud their employer.

The suspects were charged hardly a month after the State House Anticorruption Unit had raided Post Bank and retrieved documents, which the unit said would help in investigations over alleged mismanagement of the bank.
In a statement after the raid Ms Nakalema said they were investigating alleged abuse of office and some senior bank officials were under inquiry.

“This investigation is being carried out in consultation with Bank of Uganda and Ministry of Finance,” she said in the statement.
Her team, Ms Nakalema said, was working with CID and the Office of the Auditor General to carry out a special investigation on Post Bank’s head offices on Nkrumah Road.