06 January 2020
Former Uganda Law Society boss, Ruth Sebatindira, is the new administrator of cash-strapped operator Uganda Telecom.
The company was originally placed in receivership in April 2017, following a dispute between the company and the country’s ministry of finance over unpaid dues, as its debts rapidly out stripped its asset base.
It is understood that at the point it was placed into receivership, Uganda Telecom had debts and liabilities of around US$245m, whilst its asset base was valued at only US$40m).
Uganda’s president Yoweri Museveni previously stated that the former government owned telco was a victim of corrupt officials who sort to strip the company’s assets and pay themselves exorbitant salaries.
In November 2016 the Ugandan government opened a public committee to investigate corruption at the telco and to ascertain whether up to US$1.5bn had been embezzled from the company by its staff.
In May 2017, Bermanya Twezabe was appointed as the administrator of Uganda Telecom and was tasked with returning the company to a financially viable position. However, in December 2019 irate creditors from Uganda’s Contributory Pension Scheme wrote to the High Court requesting that Twezabe be replaced as administrator.
New administrator Sebatindira will commence her duties with immediate effect.
Uganda Telecom was Uganda’s first telco and provides 3G mobile network services to millions of subscribers across the country.