Emmanuel Tumusiime Mutebile biography
Who is Emmanuel Tumusiime Mutebile. FILE PHOTO

Who is the governor of the Bank of Uganda? Flash Uganda Media looks at the biography of Emmanuel Tumusiime Mutebile, a Ugandan economist and banker.

Emmanuel Tumusiime Mutebile is a Ugandan economist and banker. He is the governor of the Bank of Uganda (BoU), the central bank of Uganda.

He was first appointed to that position on 1 January 2001 and was re-appointed for the second five-year term on 1 January 2006.

In December 2015, he was re-appointed for the fourth five-year term, effective 12 January 2016 until date. He has been active since 1979, well known for economics and fiscal discipline.

Early Life and Education

Emmanuel Tumusiime Mutebile was born on 27, January 1949 in Kabale District, Western Uganda to a peasant’s family of nine children.

Tumusiime Mutebile attended Kigezi College Butobere for his O-Level studies (grade S1-S4) after he joined Makerere College School in Kampala for his A-level studies (grades S5-S6).

In 1970, he joined Makerere University, where he was elected president of the University Students’ Guild.

In 1972, Mutebile was forced to flee Uganda after he gave a speech publically criticizing the expulsion of Asians from the country by Idi Amin. He fled to England via Tanzania and was able to finish his studies at Durham University, graduating with an upper-second in Bachelor of Science in Economics and politics.

In October 1974, he began his post-graduate studies of Master of Science in Economics at Balliol College, Oxford University, before returning to East Africa. He entered the University of Dar es Salaam to lecture and conduct research while pursuing his doctorate in economics.

In 2009, Nkumba University, a private university based in Nkumba along Entebbe road, awarded him an honorary Doctor of Philosophy Degree in recognition of his “great contribution towards the development of Uganda’s financial sector”.

Emmanuel Tumusiime Mutebile biography
He is the longest-serving chief executive in the Bank of Uganda’s history. FILE PHOTO

Work and Experience

Between the years 1979 and 1984, Tumusiime Mutebile was appointed to several government positions in Uganda ranging from deputy principal secretary to the president at State House in 1979, to undersecretary in the ministry of planning in 1981 where he rose to senior economist and then chief economist in 1984.

In 1992, he was appointed permanent secretary to the newly combined ministry of finance planning and economic development, a merger that he had advocated while working under Minister of Finance Gerald Ssendaula.

He is the longest-serving chief executive in the Bank of Uganda’s history. He is credited with many of the sound economic policies adopted by the Uganda government at the urging of the central bank during the 1990s and the first decade of the 2000s.

He has served as Governor and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Bank of Uganda since 2001 to date.

A seasoned professional economist and implementation of the Economic Reform Program that restored Uganda from the economic crisis of the 1970s and 1980s to sound economic performance during his service as the Permanent Secretary/Secretary to the Treasury in the ministry responsible for finance, planning, and economic development.

He worked as a consultant for multilateral and regional organizations including the World Bank, International Monetary Fund, and Organization for Economic Corporation and Development, Macroeconomic and Financial Management Institute of East and Central Africa, UK Department for International Development, the North-South Institute in Canada, and for the governments of Rwanda, Kenya, Tanzania, Eritrea, and Nepal.

He was a member of the High-Level Panel of the UNDP for the production of the Human Development Group for overseeing the evaluation of the implementation of the Comprehensive Development Framework of the World Bank in 2001, and the High-level Panel of Eminent Persons to advise the President of the African Development Bank on the strategic future of the African Development Bank in 2006.

He holds Fellowships of the World Bank Institute, and Rotary Foundation of Rotary International.

Mutebile is as well a Companion of the Commonwealth Partnership for Technology Management (CPTM) and a Doctor of Laws (Honoris Causa) of Bishop Stuart University.

Makerere University honoured him with the establishment of the Prof. Emmanuel Tumusiime Mutebile Chair of Monetary Policy, Banking and Finance.

Mutebile is highly revered and is credited for the prudent and effective monetary policy performance in Uganda. 

Other Responsibilities 

Since 2006, he has been a visiting professor in the Department of Economics at Makerere University, the oldest and largest university in Uganda. 

Tumusiime-Mutebile is the chancellor of the International University of East Africa, a private university established in 2011, with an urban campus in Kampala, Uganda’s capital.

Makerere University honours Mutebile
Makerere University honours Mutebile. FILE PHOTO

Emmanuel Mutebile – Current Health Status

Emmanuel Tumusiime Mutebile is currently admitted at Nakasero Hospital in Kampala undertaking treatment in critical condition and according to doctors his health is improving and will be discharged soon.

The world over, central bank governors are so important and crucial to the extent that their health situations are very sensitive, even affecting the performance of stock markets, the economy and even politics.

Meanwhile, taking the Governor out of the country is not an option currently due to the coronavirus pandemic globally.

“He is not expected in office anytime soon. His health is failing. There’s a great worry,” an insider told the local news website.

The health of the governor has been a corridor talk for a while.

In 2018, Prof Mutebile had to be flown to the UK for specialized medical treatment after he collapsed at home.

In 2016, one of the local tabloids alleged that the governor was seriously ill and living off a lifesaving machine.

However, a few days later while announcing the Monetary Policy Statement for October 2016; Governor Mutebile faulted The Red Pepper for trading in falsehood.

The Bank of Uganda on Tuesday night 31st, March 2020 issued a statement confirming that Governor Emmanuel Mutebile is on the sickbed but responding well to treatment.

Ms Charity Mugumya, the Central Bank’s Director of Communications said in a statement posted on the bank’s Twitter handle that the governor was unwell, but “his doctors attended to him and he is currently recovering very well”.

His poor health condition prompted the BoU Board of Directors to appoint Dr Adam Mugumya, the current BoU Director of Research, as the acting Deputy Governor by the close of March 2020, so that there was a substantial person to make decisions and avoid leaving a leadership vacuum.

Close sources say, the Governor’s poor health later forced President Museveni to appoint Dr Michael Atingi-Ego the new deputy governor of Bank of Uganda, replacing Dr Louis Kasekende whose contract ran out in January this year.

The President announced the appointment on his social media pages on Sunday, March 29, adding that the appointee waits for vetting by parliament.

Much as Dr Atingi-Ego had been on Museveni’s list of potential appointments, he had not been in a rush to appoint him at this time when the country is struggling to contain coronavirus pandemic.

However, with the central bank lacking a potential decision-maker in the face of the coronavirus pandemic, the President had to act.

Emmanuel Mutebile’s Death

Uganda Broadcasting Corporation reported on its Twitter account that Uganda central bank governor Emmanuel Tumusiime Mutebile died at the age of 72.

Mutebile was admitted to Nairobi Hospital after collapsing due to complications related to diabetes on Sunday, December 31, 2021. He had been in and out of hospitals in recent years for similar issues.

Family

Emmanuel Mutebile is married to Betty Amooti Mutebile. The couple has a son called Mr Duncan Tumusiime

In 2015 on Tuesday 27th, October Mutebile together with his wife Betty Amooti Mutebile attended an occasion at Makerere University where he received recognition officiated by Prof Dumba Ssentamu for the construction of a multi-billion complex in honour of the Governor of Bank of Uganda, at MUK Private Sector Forum grounds.

The function was attended by the Prime Minister of Uganda, Dr Ruhakana Rugunda, and Dr Okello Ogwang.