ENTEBBE —The Minister for the Presidency Milly Babalanda has applauded the senior management of Uganda Printing and Publishing Corporation (UPPC) for being focused and ensuring that the Corporation is financially stable and is operating according to excellent standard.
Mrs. Babalanda made the remarks on Wednesday as she approved UPPC’s workplan and the Shs20.6 billion budget for the next financial year 2022/2023.
The Presidency Minister is the overall supervisor of UPPC, a public enterprise whose role is to supply stationery and provide printing and publishing facilities to all Government Ministries and Departments as well as interested private entities.
In the budget meeting, the Minister confessed that the general public is still unaware of the work UPPC really does. She therefore encouraged the management, staff and other responsible stakeholders to ensure that they sensitize Ugandans about the Corporation and the great work it does when it comes to printing and publishing.
“I was glad to learn of your plan to celebrate 120 years of UPPC this year. This is a very brilliant idea that I read and blessed and I very well know that it will help us to showcase to the public what we are doing.
The public out there knows so little about the UPPC. Many think that UPPC is only producing the Uganda Gazette. They do not know that we are able to do so much in printing works, publishing and even advertisements,” Mrs Babalanda urged during a meeting that took place at the Corporation’s Head Offices in Entebbe.
“This event should be a major reunion of the printing and publishing fraternity and it should also be extended to have a roundtable dinner of the corporate class to share with them our plans and strategies. Let us use the event to improve our image and sell ourselves,”she added.
The Minister also urged the UPPC senior managment and staff to ensure that they apply every coin of the funds as requested “because any diversions will be a big disservice to the Corporation which is surviving with debts; but it will certainly attract very big penalties”.
On the other hand, Mrs Babalanda reminded the staff to work harder to ensure that UPPC is a force to reckon with when it comes to printing and publishing sector in the country.
“We need to attract more business to the UPPC and to obtain more friends and clients.This however, can only be achieved if we work as a strong team of brothers and sisters.”
The Minister also made a tour at the various production, printing and publishing facilities at UPPC offices where she interacted and had a light moment with several employees.
“Indeed, am happy with your workplan for 2022/23 FY which describe your need to procure machinery. Please ensure that you support management to acquire and fully apply this equipment,” she told the staff.
“Finally, I wish to commend Management for your efforts to resolve the problem of limited space available following commencement of construction works for the Uganda Security Printing Company-USPC factory. I wish to ask that the plan to build temporary structures is speeded up.”
On his part, Kenneth Oluka, the Acting Managing Director of UPPC appreciated the Minister for always guiding them to ensure that UPPC regain its market share and increase its financial sustainability.
He assured the Minister and the general public that by 2024, UPPC will be a top game changer in the printing industry in Uganda.
He also highlighted the key achievements, UPPC has attained in a period of December 2021 to June 2022 (when he was appointed MD) which include developing a 5 year strategy as a way of responding to environment and industry trends to reposition the corporation as a leader in the sector and procurement of state of the art HP Indigo five colour machine which was purchased at Shs2 billion.
“We are up to date on payment of taxes with proper documentation as per the Minister’s instructions. We have also intensified recovery of debts with a collection of up to Shs5.9 billion,” Mr Oluka told Mrs. Babalanda.
He added that they have been able to pay suppliers up to Shs5.8 billion and they now owe them only Shs200 million.
“…. In that regard that UPPC management has come up with this budget aimed at strengthening, institutional capacity of UPPC to deliver on its mandate of printing and publishing.The budget is aimed at improving quality, quantity, diversity of UPPC products and to reduce on the turn around time, with a view of increasing and strengthening the Corporation’s profitability,” Mr. Oluka further explained.
Sadat Kisuyi, the Assistant Commissioner Finance and Planning at the Presidency, tasked UPPC to put their 5 year strategic plan into action since the current stiff market competition calls for innovative ways of doing business, if at all the entity is to continue thriving.
“The budget estimates are realistic, that’s why the minister has given it an approval. Let everybody do whatever they are supposed to do to rebrand UPPC because good image and qaulity are key.” Mr. Kisuyi advised.