The 9th edition of the Uganda Film Festival was nothing if not eventful. The film actors and actresses on Friday came together to celebrate their achievements by crowning the best performers of 2022. 

The Uganda Film Festival is organized by Uganda Communications Commission in partnership with numerous players in the media and telecom industry including MTN Uganda.  Dashing in African wear which was the dress code of the evening, MTN Uganda Chief Executive Officer, Wim Vanhelleputte appreciated the milestones achieved by the film actors and actresses in the growth of Uganda’s film industry.

“I was there in 1998 when we had few Television and radio stations and we used to listen to Congolese music so today I feel very proud that Uganda’s entertainment industry has grown. I want to congratulate all of you for this amazing achievement. We should be all be proud of you,” Vanhelleputte said to the film industry players in Uganda.

Vanhelleputte made the remarks while handing over the viewer’s choice award to the actors and production team of the Wave Film who were voted the best in that category by the public.

This year, the festival was held under the theme: “Creative Industry as a Solution to Unemployment.”

According to Irene Kaggwa Sewankambo, the executive director UCC, this year’s theme was selected to create awareness about the opportunities that the creative industry generates. 

“We do acknowledge that the creative industry encompasses a number of areas such as the arts, media ie film,TV, radio, music, advertising, architectural design, software development and digital media design. These can foster income generation, job creation and export earnings while promoting social inclusion, cultural diversity and human development,” she noted.

For a while, MTN has supported the Uganda Film Festival organized by UCC with the vision of empowering and providing opportunities for the youth and harnessing the potential of creatives in spurring Uganda’s development.

In 2020, MTN launched Kibanda Xpress, in partnership with YOTV to provide a platform for Ugandan movies with the aim of commercializing and preserving the quality of local content.

Through Kibanda Xpress, MTN also sought to cultivate the spirit of nationalism, love and consumption of local content by the public.

Since its inception, multiple players in the film industry have earned revenue from the various movies marketed on the platform.

MTN Uganda and the Uganda Communications Commission (UCC) have today concluded the official signing of the License Renewal Agreement that will enable the telecommunication company continue its operations in the country for another 12 years, commencing 1st July 2020.

A joint press conference between MTN Uganda and the Regulatory body was held today at the UCC offices in Kampala to showcase the official signing of the new license.

This brings to an end, the long-standing negotiations between MTN Uganda, The Uganda Communications Commission (UCC) and the government. This license renewal comes almost 2 years later, since MTN Uganda applied for a license renewal following the expiry of their 20 year license in October 2018.

MTN Uganda secured the12 year operating license at a fixed fee of USD 100 million (Approximately UGX 371.5 Billion) which was paid in full. The Telecom’s Second National Operator (SNO) License took effect on 1st July 2020.

Speaking at the license signing ceremony, the MTN Uganda Chief Executive Officer, Wim Vanhelleputte said that:

“I am glad to inform you that our second National Operator License has been signed and MTN can continue operating in Uganda. We are happy and  remains committed to our  vision of delivering a bold digital life to all our customers through diligent innovations and shall continue to provide high quality voice, data and mobile money services connecting Ugandans across all the 135 districts of Uganda.

MTN Uganda provides telecommunications services under a Second National Operator License for the operation of a telecommunications system issued on 15 April 1998 for a period of twenty years. The License expired on 21 October 2018 but was variously extended to accommodate conclusion of renewal negotiations which have been ongoing for close to 2years.