Ugandan government faces challenge over ICT fund

3 Sep 2014

The Ugandan government is facing a lawsuit from a local IT firm over its plans to siphon off half of the country’s ICT fund and rechannel it into a consolidated government investment fund. All companies licensed under the Uganda Communications Act must pay 2% of their annual revenues into the specialised ICT fund, with the proceeds used to promote the development of the country’s communications sector. The government now wants to take half of the ICT fund and place it in a consolidated fund for wider infrastructure projects.

The IT services and online marketing company Host Net Uganda has petitioned the Constitutional Court to stop the move, saying it is unconstitutional as it was not included as part of the government’s 2014/15 budget, local newspaper The Observer writes. The industry regulator, the Uganda Communications Commission (UCC), has already spoken out against the government’s plans. Meanwhile, Ministry of Finance spokesperson Jim Mugunga said the law gives them powers to manage all government revenues and ‘the ministry is being courteous to say that they can use the 50%.’