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UTL SAGA: Minister Anite Rubbishes Rukutana’s Opinion

The State Minister of Finance in charge of Privatization and Investments, Evelyn Anite has sternly rejected the Deputy Attorney General, Mwesigwa Rukutana’s opinion on the Uganda Telecom Network administration crisis.

Anite in a strong-worded letter directed to Attorney General, William Byaruhanga, in an apparent vote of no confidence in Rukutana, said the latter failed to comprehend her instruction of Tuesday and instead smuggled an irrelevant opinion.

“I candidly instructed you as Government lawyer to urgently apply to Court to replace the current (UTL) Administrator within the context of section 172 of the Insolvency Act, 2011 and Insolvency Regulations (161(1),” said part of the letter.

Anite stated that she did not request but instructed the Attorney General to rush to Court to save the strategic national company.

“I received a completely offside reply (ADM 202/04) from the Deputy Attorney General in regard to my instruction. I will respond to litany of fundamentally flawed innuendos/opinions he listed separately. It is indeed surprising that your Deputy interpreted my communication as a request for opinion,” added Anite.

The Minister noted that Rukutana’s conduct confirms an observation by a high level meeting at Finance Ministry that the UTL Administrator, Bemanya Twebaze is a “crooked” lawyer with dubious connections at the Attorney General’s chambers.

“Importantly, the response of the Deputy Attorney General points to a confirmation of a view shared in a meeting chaired by the Minister of Finance Planning and Economic Development with myself, Permanent Secretary and two other technical officers on Thursday 20th June 2019 at 9:00am where it was stated that ‘Mr. Bmanya Twebaze is a crooked lawyer and entrenched in Attorney Generals’ office,” noted Anite.

She also stressed that there is a cartel in government targeting to scrupulously grab UTL from government.

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“It also points to a common view that cartel in sections of government is keen to have UTL liquidated and sell themselves the strategic assets of company and people of Uganda,” said Anite.

Anite maintained her position that the Attorney General should petition Court for the removal of Bemanya Twebaze.

“The purpose of the letter is to implore you to have the petition to remove the Administrator of Uganda Telecom filed in Court without further delay,” said Anite.

Bemanya was in April 2017 appointed the Administrator of UTL after government secured a court order to avoid liquidation and keep the company afloat.

The appointment followed Government’s decision to take full control of UTL from the departing Libyan investors to protect the interest of all stake holders (UTL subscribers, shareholders, GOU, employees, staff, creditors and the public). A court order was obtained in order to effect the process.

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