The Alliance for National Transformation(ANT) leader, Gen Mugisha Muntu, has said goodwill and intent by government and private sector are major prerequisites for national development but even more important is transparency and accountability.
In a statement, Muntu said that unless Ugandans know the details of deals that were signed, they can’t hold anyone to account.
Muntu noted that as preparations for the oil pipeline get underway, it is important that government is transparent about what Ugandans are being signed up to.
“The only constant that we can bet on are the Ugandan people. It is to them, for them and by them that governments must report. And if we the people do not know what our government is getting us into, then no matter how well intentioned these agreements are, they will be contested, rejected and eventually forfeited,”he said.
He said that it is incumbent upon Ugandans to not only demand for transparency in these dealings, but to regularly demand for accountability.
“ANT commits to doing our part in mobilising Ugandans to take charge of their country’s resources and constantly keep informed about their leaders’ decisions,”he said.
According to the experts, the first commercial oil production in Uganda is projected to start 2025, roughly two decades after commercially viable oil deposits were discovered in the country
The Host Government Agreement (HGA) for Uganda was signed by Energy minister Goretti Kitutu and the pipeline holding company managing director, Martin Tiffen on April 11.
A separate HGA with the Tanzanian government which was due for signing was deferred to this week following last-minute shuffling and amendment of documents on the countries’ shareholding in the project.
The other agreements are the Shareholders Agreement; that details the obligations and shareholders structure; and, the Tariff and Transportation Agreement (TTA), which is between the pipeline company and the shippers of Uganda’s crude oil through the pipeline.