Govt clarifies on Uganda telecom crisis

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Government Citizen Interaction Centre‏ [GCIC] has clarified on the State of Uganda Telecom LTD (UTL) as raised on the floor of Parliament.

After Ucom, the Majority Shareholder in UTL withdrew further funding from the Telecom in 2017, UTL Was put under the administration of Uganda Registration Services Bureau [URSB].

At the Commencement of URSB administration, claims to UTL amounted to Shs.940billion. Since then a rigorous verification exercise has reduced the exact figure of claims to Shs.530bn.

The URSB administration has been able to reduce UTL’s monthly operational expenditure by 16%, from Shs.5.7bn in April 2017 to Shs.4.7bn in May 2019.

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The Monthly wage bill has been reduced from Shs.1.6bn in April 2017 to Shs.1bn in May 2019, a reduction of 40%!

After revamping management, UTL is now in the process of sourcing an investor and the new management has so far received 20 expressions of interest since January 2018, which remain under review.

Regarding staff welfare, UTL’s top management that was earning exorbitant salaries were let go, which has since freed up resources to motivate current staff better, including resuming their medical insurance.

In terms of service provision, the new URSB management has been able to increase UTL’s Government MDA clients from 118 to 350, which it currently supplies with Internet and telephone services.

Using Professional valuers, the new administration has been able to revise #UTL’s assets’ value from the previously under-declared $40m to now $84m, composed of investments in a submarine cable company, land, buildings, among others.

UTL has been able to recover its strategic shareholding asset in West Indian Cable Company (WIOCC), resulting in internet bandwidth capacity increasing from 1G to 2.5G thanks to capacity from WIOCC.

Generally, UTL has undergone general revamp, from switching on sites that had been switched off, overhauling generators, extending the power grid to sites & general equipment repairs, which have increased average network availability from 75% to 95%.

Finally, UTL has now enabled Mobile Money interoperability with MTN and is finalizing connectivity with Airtel to enable UTL customers to send and receive money to and from the other networks.

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