Finance Trust Bank, which has been a Micro Deposit Institution (MDI) at tier III, has transformed into a fully fledged tier I Commercial Bank.
Museveni said that despite the current business friendly environment, only 32% of Ugandans are engaged in the monetary economy, which creates high levels of dependency on those that earn money.
“This part of Africa is very deceptive and not like Europe where if you don’t work, you may die. Here, you can sleep, do nothing and not die, unlike in Asia where, because of the big population, the pressure for one to survive is high. The struggle we have is to wake our people, so they can live in a new way based on rationalized activities”, he emphasized.
However, some Ugandan economists like Prof. Augustus Nuwagaba dispute President Museveni’s claim that only a small minority of Ugandans are engaged in the monetary economy since almost every Ugandan has to purchase essential goods and services ranging from paraffin, salt, sugar to health, transport and education services.
Museveni congratulated the pioneers of Finance Trust Bank for their effort to empower women for over 20 years. Invoking a Luganda proverb ‘n’ezikokolima gaali magi’ (crowing cocks were once eggs), he expressed satisfaction over their commitment towards fighting poverty, especially among the rural women.
The Chairperson of the Board of Directors and Minister of Energy and Mineral Development, Eng. Irene Muloni, commended President Museveni for elevating women from the kitchen to boardrooms, institutions and businesses and also for promoting the general status of women.
Bank of Uganda Governor Emmanuel Tumusiime Mutebile, said Finance Trust’s transformation will help to widen the Bank’s customer base. He, however, cautioned the senior managers and the board to exercise due diligence in ensuring safety of customer funds through strict supervision. He commended the President for assenting to the Anti-Money Laundering Act to curb acts of money laundering and its negative consequences on the national economy.
Annet Mulindwa Nakawunde, who is the Managing Director of Finance Trust Bank, pledged their commitment to reducing poverty among their customers through ensuring the accessibility and affordability of their products.
During the function, founder members were awarded for their commitment, support and guidance towards the institution since its inception.