Minister of Finance Matia Kasaija has advised the embattled Uganda Investment Authority executive director Jolly Kaguhangire to respect the board's decision and step aside.
Kaguhangire was interdicted on Tuesday and sent on forced leave for three months over a litany of allegations including abuse of office, corruption, insubordination, misleading and lying to the board.
However, in defiance of the board's decision, Kaguhangire wrote back, saying she will not leave office. She argued that there was no quorum when the decision to interdict her was reached and that the meeting was called at short notice.
URN sought out the Finance minister, Kasaija on the matter. The minister told URN that the ministry can't interfere because the UIA board has full mandate to manage the authority.
"Different bodies cannot interfere in the management of the institution. We gave the board powers to manage it," Kasaija said.
Adding that, "My advice to her would be to step aside as the investigations are carried out. She has not been sacked. She is interdicted, she should step aside until investigations by the board and Inspector General of Government are complete," Kasaija said.
Earlier on, Dr Emely Kugonza, the UIA board chairperson said that they will not evict Kaguhangire from office forcefully because there are laws, which provide for how a public officer who refuses to leave office can be handled. He argued that Kaguhangire should have applied for a court injunction if she believes in what she wrote rather creating an unnecessary standoff.
The board appointed, Basil Ajer, the Authority's director in charge of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) as the acting executive director pending investigations. Ajer refused to comment on whether or not he had assumed office when contacted.
Ajer was among the five directors whose contracts had been terminated in April. The directors were supposed to vacate office at the end of this month. However, the board rescinded the decision to terminate their employment contracts.