Uganda: Pensioners Ask Court to Throw Out Bemanya

A total of 1,200 former workers of Uganda Telecom (UTL) have filed a case in the Court of Appeal seeking the removal of the telecommunication company's administrator, Mr Bemanya Twebaze, on grounds that he is in office illegally.

The pensioners have gone to court as creditors to UTL since the company owes them Shs300b in terms of their pension and the costs awarded by the Commercial Division of the High Court when they won a case against the company last year.

Through their lawyers of Matovu and Matovu Advocates, the pensioners want the Court of Appeal to remove Mr Bemanya from office.

They state that if not removed from office, Mr Bemanya who is the Registrar General of the Uganda Registration Services Bureau may not pay their money.

Mr Bemanya, who is in office as both official receiver and administrator of UTL has been running the company since May 2017 when the largest shareholders, the Libyans left as it was grappling with debts of more than Shs700b.

Pensioner's claim

The pensioners say Mr Bemanya's continuity to hold office as official receiver and administrator is a conflict of interest because the latter is by law supposed to report to the former. Mr Bemanya is yet to file his defence.

They believe Mr Bemanya has failed to pay the debt because there is no official receiver above him to compel him to do so.

"There is conflict of interest as the official receiver is one and the same person as the administrator contrary to the clear provisions of Section 199 of the Insolvency Act 2011," the notice filed on Friday reads in part.

Two weeks ago, the Attorney General (AG), Mr William Byaruhanga, advised that only the creditors and shareholders of UTL can apply to court to remove the administrator but not the Ministry of Finance because it does not have locus over a company under administration.

State minister for Privatisation and Investment Evelyn Anite had instructed the AG to apply to court to have Mr Bemanya removed because of lack of accountably to the state.

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