MTN Uganda questions reasons for CEO’s deportation

MTN Uganda questions reasons for CEO's deportation
MTN Uganda CEO Win Vanhellepute was deported last night

MTN Uganda has appointed Gordian Kyomukama, the company’s Chief Technology Officer, as Acting Chief Executive of the company, following the deportation of the substantive Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Wim Vanhelleputte.

The Belgian was deported last night, on the orders of the Internal Affairs Minister, Gen Jeje Odong making him the fourth employee of the company to be a prohibited immigrant declared under section 52 (g) of the Uganda Citizenship and Immigration Control Act.

The section among others stipulates that a person shall be declared a prohibited immigrant as a consequence of information received from reliable sources and confirmed by the Minister or by the commissioner to be an undesirable immigrant.

Wim Vanhelleputte is the fourth MTN Uganda top official to be declared persona non grata in a space of one month. The others are Italian Elsa Mussolini, the former General Manager for Mobile Finance Services, French national Olivier Prentout, who was the Chief Marketing Officer at MTN Uganda and Rwandan national Annie Bilenge Tabura, the General Manager, Sales and Distribution.

But security agencies have not come out to explain what exactly the case is against the deported foreigners. However, according to sources within the security circles, security agencies have been investigating a number of foreign nationals over their engagement in acts that compromise national security. The investigations that have since been labelled classified are still ongoing under the leadership of the Deputy IGP Stephen Sabiiti Muzeeyi.

“We are understandably concerned about these developments and are engaging with the authorities to seek understanding that would lead us to resolve this matter,” the telecom giant posted on its official Twitter handle Friday morning. It added that MTN Uganda is fully committed to respecting and operating within the laws of the country.

The deportation order shows that Vanhelleputte was deported in accordance with Section 60 (1) of the Uganda Citizenship and Immigration Control Act. According to the section, the Minister may order any prohibited immigrant or person whose presence in Uganda is unlawful to be deported out of Uganda.