The Uganda Banker’s Association (UBA), Bank of Uganda (BOU) together with African Centre for Media Excellence (ACME) have vowed to support business journalists in financial transactions.
The event dubbed BANKING SECTOR MEDIA ENGAMENT ON FINANCIAL REPORTING took place on the 19th April 2023 at Sheraton Kampala Hotel.
Speaking to News 247, Dr. Natamba Bazinzi assistant director in the communications department BoU said, “Media is a primary vehicle for the transfer of information and when it is part of the financial industry, Ugandans will benefit a lot because the decision we (Bankers) make everyday relating to how the financial sector operates those decisions will be directly transmitted to Ugandans with ease, so before we did not have this partnership however now with this partnership we see several good things going to come up,”
He added that accurate information will be communicated to Ugandans across the country, information relating to getting Ugandans out of poverty like agricultural fund, small business recovery fund and other decisions that the central bank makes will get to Ugandans in time and accurately by the media because they will be trained and their capacity will be enhanced which means that they will be able to help the banking industry to tell Ugandans about the best financial services to take them out of poverty.
“There is a lot that has been reported in this room, there is a bit of trust issue between the financial sector and journalists we feel we are not getting enough information from the banking sector and the sector players are telling us that they are governed by a very heavy rule that makes a disbursement of information to journalists is a bit of an issue,” Ms. Ruth Adong, one of the panelists and a Business editor explained while talking to this publication.
“There seem to be an information silence where some information comes to you but then some of it cannot come to you because of a number of reasons so there is quite a number of reasons why we (Journalists) do not have enough information to do the things we are supposed to do,” she added.
To ensure financial inclusion of all Ugandans in the money sector, Bank of Uganda in collaboration with Ministry of Finance Planning and Economic Development launched the “National Financial Inclusion Strategy (NFIS 2017 – 2022)” which ended last year in bidding to bridge these financial gaps
“With emphasis on five pillars: 1. Reduce financial exclusion and barriers to access financial services; 2. Develop the credit infrastructure; 3. Build the digital infrastructure; 4. Deepen and broaden formal savings, investment and insurance usage; and 5. Protect and empower individuals with enhanced financial capability. The NFIS articulates a vision for Uganda by 2022 in which all Ugandans have access to, and use, a broad range of quality and affordable financial services,” their document stated in part.
During a deadly disease that left 3628 people dead to covid-19 in Uganda, this pandemic affected small and large businesses in Uganda and because of this many desired to know how businesses are surviving thereby paving way to the reporting about business activities and financial knowledge.
According to ACME’s 2020 annual report on Coverage on Covid-19 and other public affairs, “Further analysis of the stories that focused on the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic showed that economy and finance was the most frequent subject covered (23.4% in newspapers and 28.1% on television), followed by people (15.4%), and education (12.4%). On television, education (16%) came in second place followed by people (9.1%).”
“The economy was the most discussed issue mainly because of public debate surrounding the effects of Covid-19 on the economy, businesses, and people’s livelihoods,” ACME’s report stated in part.