Kampala- Mr Juma Kisaame, a banker by profession, is the new board chairperson of Uganda Investment Authority.
He replaces, Mr Patrick Bitature, a renowned businessman whose two-term reign at the helm of the investment body ended in July 2013.
Mr Kisaame is required to oversee the completion of Kampala Industrial Business Park among other duties.
Without a substantive board, the responsibility of the board chairperson in the last one and half years was being discharged by the Minister of state in charge of Investment, Mr Gabriel Ajedra.
This had its limitation, given that the minister’s decision is not representative. As a result, the operation of the investment authority somewhat stalled.
Speaking during the inauguration of the new board chairperson and the entire board members, drawn from different expertise, the Uganda Investment Authority (UIA) executive director, Mr Frank Ssebowa, noted that without a board, business was not that normal given that most operations needed the approval of the board.
According to Mr Sebowa, the lack of a chair was delaying the implementation of the investment decisions which are a key mandate of UIA.
He said: “The last board of directors’ term expired on July 2013 and the institution has been working without a board since then although we have been working with the direct support from the ministry (of finance). We hope the new board will quickly ratify the actions taken which could not wait.”
He continued: “Absence of the board of directors was a serious challenge to the management of the Authority as far as implementation of its mandate given that a number of issues require board approvals prior to being implemented by the management.”
In her remarks, the Finance minister, Ms Maria Kiwanuka, said the selection of the board was carefully done, and tasked them to complete the construction of the Kampala Industrial and Business Park at Namanve.
The other task she expects the new board to deal with is the establishment of the one-stop centre, both the physical one (establishing the building) and the online platform that will link the institution to the global world without physical contact.