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EXCLUSIVE: Inside story of why MTN senior employees were deported

Uganda has deported French national Mr Olivier Prentout, and Rwandan Annie Tabura. The two are top executives in MTN Uganda. (PHOTO MONTAGE)

KAMPALA – The two foreign nationals working with telecom giant MTN Uganda were deported for using their positions to tap telephone conversations of senior government officials and sharing the information with foreign countries, PML Daily has learnt.

Mr Olivier Prentout, a French national and Annie Tabura, a Rwandan citizen, both senior marketing and sales officers, were deported on allegations of sabotaging national security, according to a police press statement issued on Tuesday.

Deputy police spokesperson, ACP Polly Namaye, said: “This is to inform the general public that security agencies in close coordination with immigration officials have been investigating two foreign nationals working with a leading mobile telecom company over their engagements in acts which compromise National Security. The two foreign nationals include; Olivier Prentout, a French national and Annie Tabura, a Rwandan national,” Ms. Namaye said.

And now security sources privy to the matter have intimated to this website that the two foreign nationals were intercepting calls of government officials, other prominent persons and sharing the information with foreign security agencies.

“They have been working with a leading telecom company but could use the telecom’s devices to tap calls of government officials. This has been going on for a while and a team of IT experts were signed to track them down,” sources said.

Asked whether the deportations are connected to the July 3, 2018 raid on the MTN data centre by ISO, the source said: “Yes, we got the clues during that raid and we have been following up.”

During that raid, four MTN data servers were switched off while ISO operatives accessed some of the system computers. It is not clear whether they used this information to arrest and deport Tabura and Prentout.

MTN management on Tuesday afternoon declined further interviews on the matter, insisting that the press release they issued in the morning on the matter is enough.

Ms Namaye, in her press release, seemed to hint on the matter, applauding the Directorate of Immigration for strengthening the screening procedures at all border points.

“We strongly believe that the deportation of the two foreigners, who were using their employment as tools to achieve their ill motives, has enabled us to disrupt their intended plans of compromising our national security,” Ms Namaye said.

In September 2018, Uganda expelled an American national, a Co-founder of Shule Foundation, a charity organization that had been helping needy children access education in Uganda on allegations of violating immigration laws.

Ms Jacqueline Wolfson was arrested and deported by the Ugandan authorities via a KLM flight out of Entebbe, over what rights activists described as baseless accusations of using her NGO to fund Kyadondo East MP, Mr. Robert Kyagulanyi popularly known as Bobi Wine and his People Power Movement

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