UPPC to start printing Ugandan currency in next 15 years

The Uganda Printing and Publishing Corporation (UPPC), a government agency which prints and publishes all government laws and public legal notices in the government weekly, the Uganda Gazette, has announced that it has partnered with a company, Veridos, which will build the capacity of UPPC to be able to print Ugandan currency over the next 15 years.

UPPC Acting Director General Kenneth Oluka said on Friday that the company, on behalf of the Ugandan government, entered into a 15-year partnership with Veridos to build the capacity of the Uganda Securities Printing Company (USPC), which belongs to the UPPC.

USPC, in which Veridos owns 49% of the shares, and UPPC – 51% of the shares in the name of the Ugandan government, will have the ability to print Ugandan currency in the name of UPPC after the exit of Veridos.

The USPC was formulated as a joint venture between the Ugandan government and Veridos in November 2018 as a special purpose vehicle to revamp the UPPC.

Speaking on Friday, Oluka said he has started construction of a security printing factory where Veridos will allow the USPC to print a number of security documents such as passports, national ID cards, driving licenses, among others, and possibly Ugandan currency.

“We have started the process of building a security printing plant. This security printing company will print a number of security jobs including passport, national ID cards, driver’s licenses and other security printing materials. Eventually, it is hoped that we will be able to print banknotes at USPC because the plant that will be built meets international standards for secure printing,” Oluka said.

“So after 15 years of partnership, it is expected that Veridos will have recouped its capital investments and will hand over the USPC plant to UPPC who will hold it on behalf of the Ugandan government. USPC will have the ability to print money,” Oluka explained.

President’s Office Secretary Hajji Yunus Kakande speaking at the event.

According to him, the main purpose of having Ugandan shillings printed in the country is to save the currencies that the government uses to print money overseas.

“It could also help curb other unfortunate incidents such as the 2019 saga when Bank of Uganda officials breached Central Bank procurement procedures by allowing unauthorized extra currency to be printed in France.”

Two of the officials, Francis Kakeeto, then Branch Manager, Bank of Uganda Currency Center, Mbale and Mr. Vito Wanyama, Deputy Branch Manager, Bank of Uganda Currency Center in Kabale, also authorized additional loading on a private chartered plane. rented by Bank of Uganda as they traveled to France to oversee the shipment of Ugandan currency which had been printed.

They were arrested by police and the State House Anti-Corruption Unit.

They were later charged with three counts which included; Abuse of office, corruption and dereliction of duty.

Officials from UPPC and other government agencies pose for a photo during the event.

UPPC celebrates 120 years

In the meantime, the UPPC celebrated its 120th anniversary on Friday.

Speaking at the event marking the celebrations, the secretary in the office of the president, Yunus Kakande, said his office will compel government ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) to heed President Museveni’s directive that all government institutions should offer at least 40% of their printing activity to UPPC.

Oluka said some MDAs have complied with the directive, but added that more needs to be done.

“The MDAs reacted accordingly even though they could do better. The response has been good, particularly last month towards the end of the fiscal year, and we believe it will improve. So we still want to appeal to MDAs who have not responded to the presidential directive that we are ready to serve them,” he said.

The UPPC is a government agency in its own right, but does not receive money from the Consolidated Fund to carry out its activities.

The Society depends mainly on income from publications made in the Uganda Gazette and the printing of policy statements for the government.

Oluka said UPPC needs government support to contribute to the treasury.

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