Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga, appointed Chua West MP Okin Ojara to chair the Select Committee to investigate the state of health of UTL
David Nambale, takes oath as UTL managing director, Mark Shoebridge (right) and chief financial officer, James Wilde look on. Photo by Miriam Namutebi.
The top brass of Uganda Telecom (UTL) has requested lawmakers sitting on a select committee probing its alleged mismanagement to hold all interfaces involving its staff behind closed doors.
Early this month, Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga, appointed Chua West MP Okin Ojara to chair the Select Committee to investigate the state of health of UTL and determine its economic value.
The committee was also tasked to advise government on the viability of continuing to hold shares in the corporation.
Led by Corporation managing director, Mark Shoebridge, UTL’s top echelon on Tuesday told lawmakers that allowing the media to cover the select committee proceedings will compromise the entity’s market position in a highly competitive business venture.
“Given the invitation you gave us, we have prepared a detailed submission touching on many aspects of the corporation which we feel is sensitive,” Wilde said.
Earlier, UTL counsel, Ben Wacha had fired the first salvo, warning of the dangers of compromising UTL’s position in the market if the interface with lawmakers is left open to the media.
For today’s interface, Ojara acceded to UTL’s request, but warned that the committee’s decision will depend on a case by case basis.
The decision for parliament to constitute a probe committee into UTL’s operations followed a motion by Nandala Mafabi in which he cited a slew of flaws in the mismanagement of a corporation in which government still owns 31%.
Among the flaws cited by Mafabi included non-auditing of company accounts; lack of investment in the company and several court cases against the company, as causes of the firm's eminent collapse.