Members of Parliament (MPs) on the Committee of Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises (CoSASE) are set to meet Uganda’s President, Yoweri Museveni at State House, Entebbe today over his role in the Shs6bn oil handshake, Business Focus has established.
Led by Committee Chairman, Abdu Katuntu, the lawmakers are set to ask Museveni why he directed that the Ugandan team that represented the country in oil tax case against Heritage Oil Company be paid Shs6bn off tax payers’ money yet they didn’t play a big role.
This comes after the MPs’ travel to London to investigate lawyers of Curtis-Mallet-Prevost that was hired by Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Affairs to represent Uganda in the Tax Appeals Tribunal that Uganda eventually won.
The lawmakers found out that the firm received but never remitted the US$4m (about Shs14.4bn) in costs to the Ugandan Government.
A lawmaker who travelled to London, but spoke to us on condition of anonymity revealed that while officials from Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) and Attorney General’s chambers argued that they physically met up with Curtis lawyers, the lawmakers found out that there was no physical meeting apart from teleconferencing conducted through Skype.
It is worth noting that Uganda paid over US$10M in legal fees to the London law firm.
“Curtis lawyers failed to produce evidence detailing the legal opinion they gave to the government of Uganda,” a source said.
If this revelation is anything to go by, then it is a statement that the team that received the Shs6bn Presidential handshake never did a good job as is being portrayed.