Unless otherwise, Uganda Telecom Limited (Utl) must by next week have found a new investor, Daily Monitor has learnt.
After months of trying to find a suitable funder, Daily Monitor understands that government has up to May 26 to pick a fitting investor from multiple companies that have shown interest in acquiring a piece of Utl.
Already, intense lobbying has reached fever point as different firms bid to take over a debt portfolio estimated at nearly Shs150b.
According to sources familiar with the matter, Afrinet Communications and Mauritius Telecom, which are backed by Ministry of Finance and State House, are poised to take over the telecom.
Others include Hamilton, Telecel Global, Baylis Consortium and Teleology who are equally strong contenders.
Mr Godfrey Mutabazi, the Uganda Communications Commission executive director, yesterday said he was not aware of the development.
“We are concerned with regulation and clearance aspect of all that, but so far I have no formal applications regarding any license from any of those people you are talking about. But once there is an application we will look at it,” he said.
The secretary to the Treasury and Ministry of Finance permanent secretary, Mr Keith Muhakanizi, yesterday could not confirm nor deny the development, referring the matter to Ms Evelyn Anite, the state minister for Investment.
“Ask Ms Evelyn Anite about all that. I am now attending a funeral service of my mother,” he said.
Ms Anite had not replied to our text and telephone inquiries by press time.
Last year government takeover Utl operations, after the Libyan government, who were the majority shareholder, pulled out of the troubled telecom.
The Libyan government had a 69 per cent stake in Utl while the government of Uganda held 31 per cent.