The Uganda Law Society (ULS) has called upon the Government to ring fence legal services in the oil and gas sector, for the benefit of Ugandans. This was during a meeting between ULS and the Petroleum Authority of Uganda (PAU).
Section 125 of the Petroleum (Exploration, Development and Production) Act2013 states that preference will be given to goods which are produced or available in Uganda and services which are rendered by Ugandan citizens and companies.
The law provides that where the goods and services required are not available in Uganda, they shall be provided by a company which has entered into a partnership with a Ugandan company.
The Upstream Petroleum National Content Regulations 2016 further list sixteen (16) categories of goods and services that are ringfenced for Ugandans, although the list does not include legal services.
Ali Ssekatawa, the PAU Director, Legal and Corporate Affairs, welcomed the proposal and urged ULS to advise members to register on the National Supplier Database (NSD) and the National Oil and Gas Talent Register (NOGTR).
“The law requires that suppliers of goods and services to Uganda’s oil and gas industry are sourced from the NSD. The first step, therefore, is to ensure you are registered,” he said.
Simon Peter Kinobe, the ULS President, noted that the society has capacity to provide legal services to the oil and gas sector.
Ssekatawa also informed ULS that the PAU promotes linkages between oil and gas and other sectors and will soon organise a conference on the required legal services in the sector.
The ULS delegation at the meeting with the PAU included Sam Ahamya and Allan Nshimye.