In a bid to help UTL leap out of debt, the government recently placed the struggling Uganda telecom under provisional administration of the Uganda Registration Services Bureau (URSB). While speaking to the press on Tuesday, the URSB registrar general Bemanya Twebaze said “I have no doubt in my mind that we shall achieve this as government is committed to ensure that UTL continues to trade profitably,”. Yesterday, URSB registrar general had a consultative meeting with UTL employees to put in place a strategy that will ensure the company stays competitive and also becomes profitable,
“As we speak, UTL is heavily indebted and my responsibility with the team is to ensure that we get out of this debt, that it survives but most importantly, that it runs as a going concern profitably,” Mr Twebaze said.
According to the Daily Monitor, URSB is currently engaging all stakeholders, including more than 400 UTL employees.Mr Twebaze’s agenda wants to ensure that creditors get maximum returns and that receivables comply and pay what is due to UTL, as his number one priority.
UTL’s woes came to light last year when Parliament’s probe committee revealed that the telecom company was debt-ridden to a tune of Shs128b. The report showed that top managers enjoyed fat salaries and a lot of fraud was discovered which seemed to have crippled the company over the years. The company’s downfall began when Libya African Portfolio Green, then majority shareholders based in Tripoli, Libya were managing UTL with less consultation and unknowing of the business situation in Uganda.
The Daily Monitor further reports that, there has been inconsistency in the financial audit figures as PricewaterhouseCoopers, a UK headquartered multinational audit firm, put UTL’s liabilities at UGX 700b, while Mr Stephen Kaboyo, the board chairman of UTL recently put them at UGX 500b. This is compared to the assets which stand at just UGX 248b.