IGG clears Uganda Broadcasting Corporation board

stronPARLIAMENT- stronAfter a four-year standoff at the Uganda Broadcasting Corporation (UBC), the Inspector General of Government has broken the deadlock, sanctioning the new board amid allegations of conflict of interest.

On April 1, Ms Irene Mulyagonja, stopped the swearing in of the new UBC board, chaired by ex-Trade state minister Nathan Igeme Nabeeta, after a whistleblower cited “credibility issues” arising from the alleged “conflict of interest”.

Although Information minister Rose Namayanja was scheduled to swear-in the seven members of the new board on April 2, an undisclosed whistleblower petitioned the IGG and secured a temporary injunction.

The IGG launched an inquiry into the credibility of the new board.

The whistleblower alleged that the new chairperson, Mr Nabeeta and two other members Mr Simon Kaheru and Ms Sylvia Nakabugo, were not fit to be board members due to alleged conflict of interest.

It was alleged that Mr Nabeeta owns a business similar to UBC business and that he is a tenant of UBC in Kampala and Jinja.

It was claimed that he owns NBS TV, Channel 285 on DSTV and Nile FM 89.4 in Jinja. The whistleblower expressed concern that Mr Nabeeta would use UBC resources to promote his business.

However, the IGG in a July 9 report, cleared Mr Nabeeta and other two members of the board after investigations found no evidence of conflict of interest and breach of UBC Act, 2005.

Investigations revealed that Mr Nabeeta ceased to be a director of NBS TV in April last year and accordingly transferred his 105,000 shares to Mr Hamza Mbago. In January, Mr Mbago also sold his shares in NBS TV to Kin Group Ltd, the current sole owner of NBS TV.

It was alleged that Mr Kaheru owns SMS multimedia interface platform that would compete for business with UBC.

However, the IGG cleared Mr Kaheru, saying: “UBC provides broadcasts services in the TV and radio sub-sector, while SMS Media operates in only the telecommunications sub-sector”.

The IGG also cleared Ms Nakabugo. Other members of the board are Mr Ian Kyeyune, Mr Richard Balungi, Mr Mohamad Kabar, Ms Marian Menna.

SOURCE: Daily Monitor

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