The Central Bank has ordered all commercial banks, credit institutions and Microfinance deposit-taking institutions to freeze all accounts belonging to Magara Protus Smart and D9 entrepreneurs club not later than Friday June 30.
The order was given by Justine Bagyenda, the Acting Deputy Governor for the Bank of Uganda in a circular to all commercial Banks’ Chief Executives.
“Pursuant to Section 118 of the Financial Institutions Act, 2004, your institution is accordingly directed to immediately freeze all accounts in the names of Magara Protus Smart and any accounts belonging to an organization known as D9 Company,” Mrs. Bagyenda wrote.
She further ordered the executives to “provide Bank of Uganda with the accounts opening documents together with account statements from when they [accounts] were opened to date.”
D9 is a Brazilian organization with a business model similar to that of a pyramid scheme.
Magara, 39, is the coordinator and head of its operations in Uganda and its base is currently in Abaita Ababiri, along Entebbe road.
The organization is described as a sports trading agency and has been asking Ugandan “investors” to put in money, with USD300 (Approx. Shs1million) as the charge for the smallest joining package on top of USD50 (Approx. Shs180,000) to open up an account.
They promise that the money will multiply and yield some USD 12.75 (Approx. 45,000) per week in a category classified as bronze.
The purported payments are scheduled for 52 weeks, putting the total at USD663 (Approx.2.3million)
The company has been operational in Uganda for more than a year and has recruited hundreds.
It was also operational in the neighboring Kenya and Rwanda but was closed off due to reported scams from the members.
In her circular, Mrs Bagyenda said Magara and D9’s accounts were to remain frozen “until otherwise advised by BoU.”