MTN Uganda confirms deportation of its CEO

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MTN confirms that Wim Vanhelleputte, the CEO of MTN Uganda has been deported from Uganda.

MTN says it has not been notified of the grounds for the deportation and is working hard to establish precise reasons for the deportation.

“We are understandably concerned about these developments and are engaging with the authorities to seek understanding that would lead us to resolving this matter,” the firm announced in a statement.

However, late last month, the Ugandan government deported MTN’s Chief Marketing Officer, Olivier Prentout and Head of Sales and Distribution Annie Bilenge Tabura, French and a Rwandan nationalities respectivley citing of plans to compromise national security and incitement to violence. Prentout was detained at the country’s Entebbe airport and deported back to France. He was returning from a business trip Tabura was as she headed to work at the MTN headquarters and then deported to Rwanda.

Uganda Police on Twitter claimed that the executives were deported “over their engagements in acts which compromise national security.”

In 2018, it was reported that government security personnel raided one of MTN Uganda’s data centre and disconnected four of its servers interrupting network coverage for some of its 10 million plus subscribers. MTN Uganda was also asked to list its shares on the local stock exchange before its licence was extended for 10-year period, after 20 years of operations in the country. MTN is the biggest telco in Uganda and is owned by South African MTN Group.

To ensure business continuity, Mr Gordian Kyomukama, currently Chief Technology Officer, has been appointed as Acting Chief Executive to help continue its focus on delivering the best quality products and services to its customers.