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Gov’t starts independent verification of Uganda-South Sudan traders

FILE PHOTO: Secretary to Treasury, Keith Muhakanizi

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Government has contracted Ernst and Young, an audit firm to conduct fresh verification of Ugandan traders who supplied goods and services to South Sudan.

In May, Parliament approved up to 900 billion shillings to pay traders who supplied war-torn South Sudan between 2008 and 2013.

In 2010, South Sudan and Uganda entered into a mutual agreement which ensured that Uganda clears the debt and treats it as a loan to the government of South Sudan. The money will be paid back within five to 10 years at a six per cent interest rate after the first year.

The MoU signed, covered 10 companies, they are Rubya Investments, Kibungo Enterprises, Aponye (U) Limited, Afro Kai Ltd, Swift Commodities Establishment Ltd, Sunrise Commodities, Ms Sophie Omari, Apo General Agencies, Ropani International and K.K Transporters.

The companies have already been given at least 41 billion shillings. Early this year, Keith Muhakanizi, the Secretary to the Treasury halted the compensation process of the 10 companies calling for an independent verification exercise.

However, this process was later continued after a meeting held at the Ministry of Finance decided to proceed with the payment of the suppliers.

In a press statement issued on Monday by the Secretary to Treasury, Keith Muhakanizi, all Ugandans who supplied services and goods to South Sudan are required to submit their claims and supporting documents to the Ministry of finance.

He says those who had earlier on submitted supporting documents should submit other documents to ensure the process runs smoothly.

Muhakanizi also notes in the statement that companies that had already got payment are required to submit both documents in relation to their earlier pay and the remaining claims. The suppliers have been given until 26th July this year.

Among other things, Muhakanizi says the traders are expected to provide copies of contracts with the Government of South Sudan to supply, Tax identification numbers or certificate of registration, export declaration forms or bills of entry issues by Uganda Revenue Authority, Tax returns, Good release orders and certificate of export issued by URA.

Others are; demand notes to the Government of South Sudan, evidence of source of financing, and any other relevant documents among others.

According to reports from the South Sudan committee in Parliament, there are over 300 companies and individuals seeking pay for the goods they supplied South Sudan.

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