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Top Four Worst Ugandan PR Disasters for March

Top Four Worst Ugandan PR Disasters for March

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Published by Baliboola N Ivan
Ivan Baliboola
Ivan Baliboola

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Published by: Baliboola N Ivan on Jun 25, 2013
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07/08/2013

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Top four UgandanPR disasters- March2013
PR is relatively a new profession in Uganda and as such people tend to relate it topropaganda. Few agencies and organisation have taken crisis management as a pivotalrole of PR seriously. This list is not aimed at attacking individuals and organisation. Itoffers a professional PR insight into Crisis management in Uganda. I hope that Lessonsshared can better the PR fraternity in Uganda. I commend the inclusion of Best CrisisManagement Award category in the PRAU Excellence Awards. PR Practitioners need tostop leaving entire Crisis management to the legal departments. They should fully beinvolved.
1.Suspensionof Fr Musaalaby the CatholicChurch.
Archbishop of Kampala Dr. Cyprian Kizito Lwanga suspended Fr. Anthony Musaala,who authored a document criticising Catholic Church colleagues in Uganda, accusingthem of sexual crimes among others. Mismanagement of Fr. Musaala‘s saga byCatholic Church put it in the media spotlight. The Archbishop was quick to suspend andgive explanations without assessing the magnitude of the crisis. The Catholic Churchprolonged the crisis when they over reacted. Fr Musaala would just be transferred toanother place or a commission of inquiry publicly instituted but not sacking him. Andgoing public about the move was wrong. As Christians who preach forgiveness, the ideaof peace talks would be good. All efforts should always be done to stop crises fromgrowing. It was a delicate time especially that the Pope was just settling in.According to the Archbishop Dr Cyprian Lwanga,Fr. Musaala was suspended for thedocument, which
“damages the good morals of the Catholic believers and faults the church teaching”.
Fr. Musaala admitted to authoring the document which widelycirculated on the internet after being leaked Fr. Musaala’s letter sparked public debateconcerning celibacy in the Catholic Church. The saga also attracted enough mediaattention. He was hosted on highly rated shows and made it to the front page of dailyNewspapers.
 
2.
Tullowoil‘s allegedbribe to PresidentMuseveni
It was alleged that Tullow considered bribing President Museveni with $50million aheadof the 2011 elections. After several media reports, President Museveni issued adirective through his lawyers’ instructing Tullow Oil to respond within three days to theallegations. The story was an embarrassment to the president who is the fountain ofhonour. Tullow Oil later refuted bribery allegations and apologized to PresidentMuseveni. Tullow’s response was restricted because this court case against Heritagewas still on-going. President Museveni has since instructed police to probe Oil briberyallegations made in a London court.3. Tullow pays expatriate Shs9m daily for a yearTullow Uganda paid a one-man consultancy firm about Shs9 million per day for oneyear to teach its officials about “organizational effectiveness”, an investigation by a localnewspaper revealed. Tullow Oil says the cost was borne by the group, critics say‘organizational effectiveness’ could have been taught by local consultants. The claimshighlight the lack of goodwill because a lot of the expenses incurred by oil companiesfall under “recoverable costs” that the oil companies will claim back from Uganda whenthe oil revenue starts flowing in. The report points to an old concern of transparencyin the Oil sector.4. Uganda court rules against Hima CementOn March 26, Justice Eldad Mwangusya took away Hima’s mining rights to limestonedeposits in Kasese, western Uganda. The ruling affected its image and operations in anumber of ways. The ruling invalidated all transactions and legal rights because Himadoes not have a legal basis to carry out business in the country. East Africa GoldSniffing was contesting a decision by the Ministry of Energy that restored Hima’s miningrights after the latter managed to secure an exploration license over the same area.Hima Cement went back to court and appealed against the ruling requesting for stay ofexecution.

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