Kampala – After close to a two year-stand off with Government, telecom giants, MTN Uganda, have bowed to pressure and consented to a USD100M (approx.UGX. 373.5bn) in license renewal fees.
In the announcement via their official Twitter Account, MTN Uganda confirmed the licence renewal on Saturday, June 14, set to commence come July 2.
“MTN has fulfilled all conditions precedent to the license, including the payment of a total sum of US$100Million license renewal fee for a period of 12 years commencing 1st July 2020. MTN and the Commission will conclude the signature of the License Agreement within the coming days.” read the tweet.
MTN has fulfilled all conditions precedent to the license, including the payment of a total sum of US$100 million as license renewal fee for a period of 12 years commencing 1 July 2020. #MTNLicense
— MTN Uganda (@mtnug) June 13, 2020
The stand-off was inaugurated subsequent to MTN Uganda License expiry on October 12, 2018, when regulators, Uganda Communication Commission revised the prior queried USD 100 million assessment to USD50M.
When intel reached President Museveni, he swung in action halting the licence renewal citing that the fee set was nominal and unfitting of the MTN Uganda.
President Museveni proceeded to direct UCC to collect USD100 million.
However, MTN Uganda protested the new fee, prompting President Museveni to ask them to leave Uganda if they weren’t ready to pay the USD100 million.
The President further directed MTN Uganda to trade on Uganda Security Exchange, a move that would allow Ugandans to buy shares in the Telecom.
In its statement, MTN Uganda admitted the license debacle noting that although their license had expired, it was variously extended to accommodate conclusion of renewal negotiations which have been ongoing for close to 2years.
“MTN Uganda is now pleased to announce the conclusion of negotiations for the renewal of its Second National Operator license which expired in October 2018. MTN Uganda provides telecommunications services under a Second National Operator License for the operation of a telecommunications system issued on 15 April 1998 for a period of twenty years,” read in part the statement.