Airlines board wants media out of probe as Bamuturaki skips Cosase

By Arthur Arnold Wadero

Uganda Airlines Chief Executive Officer Jennifer Bamuturaki appears before the Committee on Commissions, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises (Cosase) at Parliament on August 16, 2022. PHOTO | DAVID LUBOWA

The Uganda Airlines Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Ms Jennifer Bamuturaki, Tuesday skipped a meeting with Parliament’s Committee on State Authorities and State Enterprises (COSASE) where her team and the legislators were meant to further discuss queries raised in the Auditor General’s report for the Financial Year 2020/2021.

The probe that commenced last Tuesday was meant to continue today, to among others things, look into the operations of the national carrier, procurement processes, losses suffered and also establish if the current directors and managers at the airlines qualify for the positions they hold.

National
Airlines board wants media out of probe as Bamuturaki skips Cosase
Tuesday, August 23, 2022

Uganda Airlines Chief Executive Officer Jennifer Bamuturaki appears before the Committee on Commissions, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises (Cosase) at Parliament on August 16, 2022. PHOTO | DAVID LUBOWA
By Arthur Arnold Wadero
awadero@ug.nationmedia.com

What you need to know:
The board of the Uganda Airlines has asked the committee to carry out the probe into its operations without the media, arguing that this is meant to ‘protect’ the image of the national carrier.
The Uganda Airlines Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Ms Jennifer Bamuturaki, Tuesday skipped a meeting with Parliament’s Committee on State Authorities and State Enterprises (COSASE) where her team and the legislators were meant to further discuss queries raised in the Auditor General’s report for the Financial Year 2020/2021.

The probe that commenced last Tuesday was meant to continue today, to among others things, look into the operations of the national carrier, procurement processes, losses suffered and also establish if the current directors and managers at the airlines qualify for the positions they hold.


The Manager in charge of Quality Assurance, Mr Michael Kalisa, Tuesday delivered a letter notifying the committee of his boss’ failure to appear, requesting to reschedule the meeting to the second week of September, to enable them fix ‘key issues’ at their office [Uganda Airlines] that cannot be postponed.

“I am here on behalf of the CEO who asked me to deliver the letter which essentially requests that we reschedule to the second week of September sir,” Mr Kalisa told the committee.

This was, however, discarded by the committee with the chairperson, Mr Joel Ssenyonyi (Nakawa West MP), describing the management as ‘unserious’ for requesting for an extension on the actual day the meeting was supposed to take place.

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Mr Ssenyonyi issued fresh summons demanding that Ms Bamuturaki appears tomorrow [Wednesday] without fail.

“She had better show up tomorrow, we are going to issue summons today. If she does not show up then we shall issue a warrant of arrest so that wherever she is, they can bring her here,” Mr Ssenyonyi said.

Similarly, the board of the Uganda Airlines has asked the committee to carry out the probe into its operations without the media, arguing that this is meant to ‘protect’ the image of the national carrier.

The request has, however, been rejected by the committee leadership, insisting that media presence is necessary for purposes of transparency.

“If you don’t have anything to hide then, everything should be out there. We think that Uganda Airlines should be accountable to Parliament and also the public out there,” Mr Ssenyonyi said.

The committee last week discovered that Ms Bamuturaki did not meet the minimum academic qualification for the job at the time of her appointment; a matter that stirred mixed reactions across all sections of the public.

The revelation came after she presented copies of her Curriculum Vitae (CV), job description and academic documents to the committee.

The committee indicated that at the time of her appointment, Ms Bamuturaki only had a Bachelor of Arts degree in Social Works and Social Administration (SWASA) and lacked a postgraduate qualification, as it had been required.

Whereas Ms Bamuturaki possesses most of other qualifications raised in the copy of the advert, it was noted that she did not have a post graduate training in administration or any other business-related course.

She also has a 15-year minimum experience, which dwarfs the 10-year experience that was required of applicants. Ms Bamuturaki, however, indicated that she is currently pursuing Master of Arts degree in Public Administration at Makerere University.

In her defense, Ms Bamuturaki said unlike other fields of work in Uganda, the aviation industry administration largely depends on one’s experience, adding that she secured her experience in the industry from the International Air Transport Association (IATA), which makes her fit for the job.

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