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Governance

  • Government and oil companies agree on refinery, pipeline strategy

    Ghana’s  45,000 bpd Tema Oil Refinery: The Uganda government has  reached an agreement with the oil companies to set up a similar facility, but  with less capacity.

    The deadlock between the government of Uganda and international oil companies over the size of the refinery to be built in Hoima District has finally been broken, a senior government official has confirmed.

    “The government and the oil companies have struck a deal that it should be 30,000 barrels a day,” Assistant Petroleum Commissioner Robert Kasande told Oil in Uganda in a telephone interview.

    Previously, the government had wanted to start with a small refinery producing 20,000 barrels a day, and then progressively scale it up to 120,000 barrels per day. Oil companies argued that this was too ambitious and that the majority of the crude oil should be exported through a pipeline.  Read More

  • Corruption a major concern as transparency conference opens in Kampala

    Rtd.Bishop Baker Ocholla (Photo: CM)

    Ugandan delegates attending a two-day Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) Implementation Conference in Kampala have expressed their worry over government’s apparent reluctance to protect oil revenues from corrupt officials.

    Reacting to the opening speech by Uganda’s junior Minister for Finance in charge of investments, Hon. Aston Kajara, several Ugandan delegates observed that government had not instituted adequate measures to safe guard oil revenue, yet the Public Finance Bill would be tabled soon. Read More

  • Environment is weakest link in Norwegian aid to Uganda, says report

    Seven years of ‘Oil for Development’ aid from Norway has significantly boosted the resource management capacity of Uganda’s Petroleum Exploration and Production Department (PEPD)—but environmental management lags far behind, with serious weaknesses in the National Environment Monitoring Authority (NEMA) and its partner agencies, according to a recent evaluation of the programme.

    PEPD has demonstrated “good leadership and coordination” of Norwegian aid and “effective internal organisational development,” the evaluation report observes.

    The Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development is also praised for “good leadership so far” and “good cooperation [with] subordinate institutions” on issues relating to tax and revenue management. Read More

  • Norway model not the best for Uganda, says leading oil commentator

    Dr. Duncan Clarke (Photo:in2eastafrica)

    Uganda does not necessarily have to adopt the Norwegian model for it to have a sustainable oil industry, says Zimbabwean born Dr. Duncan Clarke, an author and commentator on oil issues in Africa.

    In a presentation to the 6th East African Petroleum Exhibition and Conference in Arusha last week, Dr. Clarke referred to the Norwegian model as the “advocacy NGO type model” which “constrains the growth of the natural resource.” Read More

  • Image: Bukenya Matovu

    “As soon as the president assents, everything will be in motion”

    Bukenya Matovu, Senior Assistant Secretary in the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development

    What are the next steps in establishing the Petroleum Authority and National Oil Company mandated by the upstream Petroleum Bill passed at the end of last year?  Why has the president, who repeatedly intervened to push the bill through parliament, not yet got round to signing it?  When will the government invite bids from companies keen to take up new exploration licences?   What are the prospects for East African countries to come up with a joint, win-win, oil infrastructure development plan?  And with so much oil and gas prospecting in the region, can Uganda be sure that there will be a local export market for products from the country’s planned oil refinery?  These are the among the questions addressed by Mr. Bukenya Matovu, Senior Assistant Secretary in the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development and the ministry’s main spokesperson , in the following, exclusive interview, transcribed in full. Read More

  • MP Ssekikubo, leading critic of oil bill, arrested

    Lwemiyaga MP Theodore Ssekikubo

    Member of Parliament, Theodore Ssekikubo (NRM Lwemiyaga), a vocal critic of the petroleum bill recently passed by Uganda’s parliament, was arrested last night on charges of “inciting violence” according to national media.

    Hon. Ssekikubo, who chairs the Parliamentary Forum on Oil and Gas, was reportedly arrested on Bombo Road in Kampala at around 9pm.   He had previously been summoned to appear in court on charges of inciting violence at Christ the King church during a requiem mass for the late Cerinah Nebanda, Read More

  • Image: John Nagenda

    “The President cannot know everything”

    Nagenda: "annoyed" with donors, "tired of everything ending up in the hands of the president"

    President Museveni’s long-serving senior media adviser, John Nagenda, freely admits that he knows more about cricket than oil.   Yet, he tells Oil in Uganda in this exclusive interview, Ugandans are perhaps too inclined to forge ahead without advice—and none more so than the president.  Oil could transform Uganda, he argues, but more parliamentary oversight would help prevent abuse, and it needs to be treated as a national resource.

    Read More

  • Image: Christmas turkey

    So you think you know about oil? And want to be a millionaire?

    For this young man, a bird on the shoulder is worth more than a barrel of oil in the bush (Photo: NY)

    The Oil in Uganda team extends warm, seasonal greetings to all our readers.  Also, to entertain you in between bouts of feasting, we have prepared a little quiz to test your general knowledge of oil  in Uganda and beyond.  Doing the quiz won’t, alas, make you a millionaire, but you may glean some interesting–and some shocking–facts. The answers to the following twenty questions appear at the end of the text—together with a ‘performance assessment’ depending on how many questions you answered correctly. Read More

  • Image: Irene Sekyana

    New leadership for civic oil coalition

    Irene Sekyana, newly elected Chair of CISCO (Photo: NY)

    Transparency and access to information will be the key demands and objectives of the Civil Society Coalition on Oil and Gas (CISCO) under its newly elected Chair, Irene Sekyana.

    “We want to see how the coalition can be broadened out to reach grass roots people in the oil producing areas because they are vulnerable and they will be impacted most by oil and gas development”  Ms. Sekyana told Oil in Uganda.  “We want to reach these people and give them information and then see how they can use that to advocate for having their rights respected—property rights, land rights, environmental rights and social rights.” Read More

  • Museveni lashes civic critics and foreigners, praises oil scientists

    Some MPs and NGOs “acting on behalf of foreign interests” are “trying to cripple and disorient the development of Uganda’s oil sector,” President Yoweri  Museveni told parliament yesterday in a combative address that played strongly to nationalistic sentiment but also proclaimed “science” as the beacon of government policy on oil.

    MPs Theodore Ssekikubo, Wilfred Nuwagaba and Abdu Katuntu were singled out for personal mention and attack in the two-hour presidential address.  “What they are doing is an unforgivable sin. It is sacrilege. To stand here and use the forum of Parliament which I created for you, through sacrificing blood, is unacceptable”  Mr. Museveni  said of the small group of MPs who had voted against the government’s proposals for structuring and regulating the oil industry. Read More