Uganda: Government Defends Self On MTN Boss Deportation

(file photo).

Kampala — Government yesterday defended its decision to deport MTN former Uganda Chief Executive Officer (CEO).

The Senior State Attorney, Mr Wanyama Kodoli, told court that the former CEO, Mr Wim Joris Vanhelleputte's application seeking a review of Internal Affairs Minister Jeje Odongo's deportation order was misconceived.

He said the minister did not need any permission to deport Mr Vanhelleputte.

"The Immigration Act of Parliament gives the minister full powers to deport someone and whoever is aggrieved with his decision there is another option of appealing," Mr Wanyama told court.

Mr Vanhelleputte's lawyer, Mr Wycliffe Birungi, told court that the deportation order issued against him by Gen Odongo was inappropriate.

"The process used by the Minister of Internal Affairs to declare the applicant (Mr Vanhelleputte) was undesirable and his subsequent deportation was high-handed and or arbitrary and contrary to the law as the applicant was never accorded any fair or just treatment before, during and after making of the deportation order," Mr Birungi submitted.

Resolution

Justice Henrietta Wolayo set May 10 for Mr Vanhelleputte to make written submissions while the respondent, the Attorney General, will make a rejoinder on June 17.

In the suit, Mr Vanhelleputte, a Belgian national married to a Ugandan, explains why he continued communicating with the earlier deported MTN-Uganda staff, which he says was the reason for his deportation on February 14 this year.

He says he continued with communication to seek answers why they had not yet handed over office at the time of their deportation.

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