Uganda: Deported MTN Boss Returns to Uganda After Presidential Pardon

The surprise return of Vanhelleputte is likely to put security chiefs on the spot, after separate investigations exonerated him.

President Museveni has pardoned deported MTN Uganda chief executive officer Wim Vanhelleputte and ordered the Immigration Department to remove him from the Stop List.

Mr Vanhelleputte, who was deported in February over allegations of undermining state security, is expected back in Uganda Thursday aboard a South African Airways flight.

A letter from the office of the Internal Affairs Minister to the Director of Citizenship and Immigration Control, a copy of which The EastAfrican has seen, directs that he be allowed back in Kampala.

"This is...to direct that he is immediately removed from the immigration Stop List, and accordingly be allowed into the country. By copy of this letter, the In-Charge Immigration/Security at Entebbe Airport are accordingly asked to allow him access and immigration clearance through Entebbe VIP lounge. Treat as urgent," reads the letter dated May 29, stamped "Very Urgent."

The surprise return of Mr Vanhelleputte is likely to put security chiefs on the spot, after separate investigations exonerated him.

His removal from the Stop List marks a dramatic reset of relations between Kampala and the South African telecoms giant, whose top leadership had been accused of spying for Rwanda.

Ugandan president Yoweri Museveni has pardoned deported MTN Uganda chief executive officer Wim Vanhelleputte and ordered the Immigration Department to remove him from the Stop List.

Mr Vanhelleputte, who was deported in February over allegations of undermining state security, is expected back in Uganda Thursday aboard a South African Airways flight.

A letter from the office of the Internal Affairs Minister to the Director of Citizenship and Immigration Control, a copy of which The EastAfrican has seen, directs that he be allowed back in Kampala.

"This is...to direct that he is immediately removed from the immigration Stop List, and accordingly be allowed into the country. By copy of this letter, the In-Charge Immigration/Security at Entebbe Airport are accordingly asked to allow him access and immigration clearance through Entebbe VIP lounge. Treat as urgent," reads the letter dated May 29, stamped "Very Urgent."

The surprise return of Mr Vanhelleputte is likely to put security chiefs on the spot, after separate investigations exonerated him.

His removal from the Stop List marks a dramatic reset of relations between Kampala and the South African telecoms giant, whose top leadership had been accused of spying for Rwanda.

See What Everyone is Watching

More From: Monitor

Don't Miss

AllAfrica publishes around 700 reports a day from more than 140 news organizations and over 500 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.