Cabinet has approved 11 nominees to the Uganda Tourism Board after almost a year without a substantive board of trustees to superintend management.
The minister of Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities, Prof Ephraim Kamuntu, revealed that the delay arose after some members of cabinet opposed former minister Daudi Migereko's nomination as board chairperson, citing his political background.
"If there is any board I know where there is stiff competition, this is one of them. There was a lot of pressure within cabinet," Kamuntu said, as he interacted with new board members after they took their oaths of office on Wednesday.
Other prominent members of the 10-team board include Susan Muhwezi, chairperson of the Uganda Hotel Owners Association; Yogi Birigwa, country manager of South African Airways; Chemonges Sabilla of Uganda Wildlife Authority, and Eddie Kirya of the Association of Uganda Tour Operators.
According to Kamuntu, President Museveni has tasked the new board to increase the sector's contribution to GDP from its current 10 per cent to at least 15 per cent by 2020.
In his remarks, Migereko wondered why cabinet was hesitant to approve his nomination.
"It's only in Uganda where everybody says don't deal with a politician when it comes to matters of business," the former Butembe MP said.
Stephen Asiimwe, the chief executive officer at UTB, said the institution has faced management challenges as a result of not having a board.
Authors: All Africa