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Government Inks Oil Pipeline Deal With Total…

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President Yoweri Museveni today presided over the signing of the Host Government Agreement (HGA) for the East Africa Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) project between the government and Total.

Museveni congratulated Total upon concluding this agreement which he said will now move Uganda closer to production of crude oil in Uganda.

“It has taken long but I want to assure Ugandans that this was deliberate. We have gone through every item,” Museveni said.

Statiscally, Uganda as a country has oil as a small fraction of its wealth. The big part is agriculture, industry, services and human resource. Museveni however said that Oil can be a good spark for transformation.

“It will bring money which we shall use to develop infrastructure, science and technology. This money will not be used for consumption. We shall use it to enhance our durable capacity,” Museveni said.

“I welcome our partners from France, led by the Total CEO and Chairman, Patrick Pouyanne. I will get in touch with His Excellency John Pombe Magufuli to follow up on Tanzania’s host agreement,” he added.

Museveni congratulated the Ugandan team, and commended them for being good negotiators.

Museveni confirmed that Uganda now has a good petroleum team in terms of science, economics, adding that they always help him because they know everything that’s happening across the world in the oil sector.

 

By Baron Kironde

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God Will Ask You How A Good Musician Went Bankrupt – Museveni Launches National Intellectual Property Policy, Inventors To Be Fully Protected By The Law…

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President Yoweri Museveni has today presided over the launch of the National Intellectual Property Policy at State House.

Intellectual Property (IP) refers to creations of the mind, such as inventions; literary and artistic works; designs; and symbols, names and images used in commerce. Intellectual Property rights grant the owner of the work exclusive rights to exploit and benefit from his/her creations.

The National Intellectual Property Policy will therefore give Ugandans full protection from the law and enable them to earn from their toil and sweat.

The IP plan is a visionary tool looking forward to a Uganda where innovation and creativity can efficiently stimulate sustainable development.

The strategy is aimed at creating a robust IP value chain that fosters innovation and creativity as pillars of sustainable development in the country.

At the launch, President Museveni commended that it is crucial that individuals are rewarded for their innovations. He however cited that IP rights cannot be talked about without addressing the issue of funding for scientist who are behind most of the innovations.

On the same occasion, Museveni also noted that the National IP Policy doesn’t only cover the work of scientists, but also protects the creative work of artists like songs, paintings, among other artistic works.

“It is also a calling from God because God will ask you how a good musician went bankrupt,” he humorously commented.

“It is not good to betray the people you serve. When you serve, you should make sure there are no stones left unturned,” he added.

“For many years, African literature was oral. We now have an opportunity to preserve our rich African literature through copyright. It is important that the government creates an environment where creativity and innovation can thrive,” Museveni said.

President Museveni said that the NRM is committed to supporting innovations aimed at increasing the profitability of Ugandans engaged in different enterprises because one of the leading factors contributing to effective policy implementation is the political commitment and will from the highest level of government.

 

By Baron Kironde

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Gov’t Applauds Patidar Samaj Community For Supporting COVID19 Fight…

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Seremba inspecting the facility

The government of Uganda through the Ministry of Health has applauded the Patidar Samaj Community for their effort in the fight against the deadly COVID19 Pandemic.

Geoffrey Seremba the undersecretary in the Ministry of Health thanked Patidar Samaj Community for giving government their property as a quarantine center to accommodate hundreds of Ugandans who returned from abroad.

Seremba with members of Patidar Samaj Comunity

Dr. Richard Mugabi, the National Coordinator COVID19 explained that the experts have assessed the premises located on plot 11/13 Bombo road and found them fit to be a quarantine centre.

“The site has a capacity of 100 residents. We appreciate and accept this offer from the Patidar Samaj Community. The Ministry of Health has committed to avail the items to ensure the site is fully functional,” Muhahi noted.

He promised that the government is going to provide the site with bed sheets, blankets, fumigation, security and food for the quarantined returnees.

Some of the Patidar Samaj community leaders

On behalf of the Patidar Samaj Community, Patel Kamlesh the chairperson Board of trustees revealed that they have spent over Shs.50m on working on the facility to make it fit for the returnees and government is free to use it.

He added that the reason behind their move to give the said facility to government was after realizing that all the facilities put in place to accommodate COVID19 suspects and patients are full.

Patidar Samaj is under the Indian Association in Uganda.

 

By Sengooba Alirabaki

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KCCA PAC Reveals Gross Mismanagement, Double Payments And Undue Payments To Unscrupulous Companies China Railway Group Seven, Energo Projekt – Lord Mayor Lukwago Says…

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Lord Mayor Lukwago receiving the report

The Capital City Public Accounts Committee (CCPAC) has revealed in its report today gross mismanagement, double payments and undue payments by KCCA to different stakeholders without following the due processes.

The Lord Mayor and his Executive Committee received the CCPAC Report at the Lord Mayor’s Gardens at City Hall from the Chairman Mr. Bob Kabaziguruka pursuant to Section 58 (9) of the KCCA Act.

CCPAC exercised its mandate of examining reports from the Auditor General and the Chief Internal Auditor for the financial years 2016/17 to 2017/18 as per the law established and therein made recommendations about the same.

Lukwago later wrote, “The Report highlighted gross mismanagement, double payments and undue payments by KCCA to different stakeholders without following the due processes. There are glaring findings particularly about Lot (1-6) where the initial estimated cost was Ugx 92,680,000,000 yet it ended up to Ugx 157,696,105,951.”

“The Secretary for Finance and Administration Hon. Moses Kataabu observed that with such inflated figures and exorbitant expenditures, Kampala Capital City Authority has lost colossal sums of money to unscrupulous companies like the China Railway Group Seven that was black listed by the World Bank. Many companies were awarded with lumpsum contracts to the detriment of tax payers,” he added.

Lukwago said that other discrepancies highlighted in the report include:

– KCCA buying the contractor equipment as it was with the China Railway Seventh Group which had its Surveying and Laboratory equipment paid for by KCCA.

– There were double payment as in the incident where Energo Projekt was paid for designing the road yet it had already been paid for in the initial contract. This followed a slight adjustment of the road under Lot 2.

– There were price hikes in the contracts of Kiziri Road in Nakawa Division under Lot 4 that was undertaken by Sterling Civil Engineering Limited from the initial 3 bn to 8.5 bns with just a 0.1 Kilometer length increment.

KCCA awarded contracts without securing the land that was to be used. Such encumbrances drained the KCCA accounts as it was during the Lot 2 and Lot 4 where 428 million was paid as interest payment.

– The Youth Fund also has cases where close to 200 million is unaccounted for out of the 3.5 bn that was allocated to KCCA. The rest can’t be satisfactorily accounted for and many of the youths that benefited from the grant can’t be traced.

Lukwago asked the Minister for Kampala to present the report to Parliament for scrutiny adding that no CCPAC has been presented to the Parliament from 2016.

He also reminded the Country that Kampala has just a third of constructed roads yet the then head of Technical Wing Jennifer Ssemakula Musisi and Director Legal Mr. Ouma Charles misused the mandate from the Authority when awarding such fraudulent contracts and therefore have to be held accountable.

The Lord Mayor reiterated that need of the oversight role from the political leadership to help in service delivery and frugality to the Authority Accounts.

He called for adequate funds from the Central Government to facilitate works at the Authority for better services in a bid to create an inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable City.

 

By Grapevine Reporter

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