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MTN Foundation partners with Joint Medical stores to improve maternal health services in Kamwenge District

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  • MTN Uganda has injected over five hundred million in the Bwizi Health Center III for the renovation of the general wards and, expansion and equipping of the maternal ward at the health center.
  •  With the construction of the new maternity ward underway, MTN Foundation is holding a corporate build with the key stakeholders in the project.
  • This is project was initiated in February 2020 and will be officially handed over in April 2020 upon its completion.

MTN Uganda, through its corporate social responsibility arm, MTN Foundation, has today held a corporate build at Bwizi Health Center III to bring to the attention of the general public and various stakeholders on the plight of maternal mortality rates within the region.

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The telecom giant has injected over five hundred million Uganda shillings in the health center to renovate, expand the maternal/ general wards, and improve the sanitary facilities like showers and placenta pit as well as a comprehensive re- equipment of the entire health facility.

With an estimated growth rate of 3.2% per year, the estimate for 2010 was 350,000 people. MTN Uganda noticed a gap that it sought to mend together with its stakeholders to see to it that mothers are availed with a safe environment for child delivery.

MTN Uganda together with Joint Medical Stores, started the project started last month.  With construction currently underway, the project will be officially handed over upon its completion next month.

The health center located in Bwizi sub county serves all the locals in the region however is restrained when it comes to the proper facilities and equipment in place.

Speaking at the corporate build, Mr. Wim Vanhelleputte the MTN Chief Executive Officer, said that MTN Uganda, together with its partners would have chosen to have all hands on deck as they wage a war against poor maternal health services.”

“Life is precious and valuable thus each and every mother deserves to give birth under the right conditions in a suitable environment without hindrances that we are in position to improve,” said Mr. Vanhelleputte as he reiterated MTN’s commitment to supporting maternal health in Uganda as an ongoing, long term project.

Hon. Frank Tumwebaze, the Minister for Gender, Labor and Social development thanked MTN Uganda for its continued support against maternal health not only in Bwizi but Uganda as a whole.

“For the last three years the MTN Marathon has raised funds to support maternal health in Uganda and today we are pleased that the MTN Foundation has delightfully come out to support Bwizi Health Center III,” Hon. Tumwebaze said.

He further urged the locals and hospital staff to be good stewards of the equipment, and facilities put in place such that the entire community gets to benefit from the improved health center.

“We have to police each other and hold the other accountable if we are to benefit as a whole from the generosity of MTN Uganda and Joint Medical stores,” Honorable Tumwebaze said.

In Uganda the maternal rate as per December 2019 was at 375 deaths/100,000 live births.

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Local Business

DStv gives extra boost to step up offer

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By Our Reporter

DStv Uganda has unveiled a new promotional offer in which customers who upgrade to a higher package will be bumped up to an even higher package at no extra cost.

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“In line with our mission to add value and enrich the lives of our customers, and with the positive response we received from the initial Step-Up deal to our customers, we wanted to up the stakes with an greater offer,” says Sauya Nakiyaga, MultiChoice Uganda’s Head of Customer Retention. “We understand that now that viewers have experienced the quality entertainment that sits on higher packages, there’s an appetite to view more of the top-class content that DStv has on its platforms.”

In this latest offer, Access customers can step up to Family and get Compact. Family subscribers can step up to Compact and get Compact Plus while Compact customers can step up to Compact Plus and get Premium.

Compact Plus customers will simply have to renew their subscription to continue to have access to the Premium package during this offer period.

Upgraded customers will be able to enjoy world-class sporting action together with original local content, international movies, series, telenovelas, music shows, news and kids’ entertainment on the Step Up Extra offer.

Meanwhile, GOtv customers have also not be left out. They will pay UGX 29,000 from UGX 39,000 for GOtv Max during this promotional period.

The Step Up Extra offer expires on the 30th of April 2020.


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What Are The Rules About Online Gambling in Uganda?

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By Staff Writer

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The online gambling industry is growing quickly and becoming more popular every day. Online casinos make it easier than ever for people all over the world to play their favorite games or join in on wagers for sporting events.

While previously, most people did not have access to physical casinos to play the games they love, the convenience of playing on a computer or smartphone makes this pastime accessible to everyone. With the increased popularity, many countries have lifted bans and/or restrictions on gambling to allow their citizens to play online.

One place in particular that has fully embraced online casinos and sports betting is Uganda. Gambling was already a popular form of entertainment in this country before online casinos were an option. Land-based casinos in Kampala have been thriving for years. Now, even more people in Uganda are gambling and it has even become a cause for some concern.

To adapt to the increasing popularity of online gambling, Uganda’s government has passed several laws to ensure that citizens are playing in a safe way. The major concern in this particular situation is a rise in underaged gambling and gambling addictions.

Gambling Habits in Uganda

Gambling has been popular in Uganda for a long time. There are multiple cities within the country that are home to land-based casinos with over a dozen options combined. Gambling is legal in Uganda and has been regulated with laws like The National Lotteries Act and the Gaming and Pool Betting Act. Some of the most popular activities include sports betting, slot machines, and the lottery.

In fact, in Africa overall, the gambling industry is thriving. Casinos continue to see record-high revenues. Each year gambling also brings in increasingly large sums in federal taxes. In Uganda specifically, the National Lotteries and Gaming Regulatory Board enforce a 35% revenue tax on all gambling activities.

Despite the financial success for the industry and the government, excessive gambling habits have been the cause of some serious concerns. The president of Uganda, Yoweri Museveni, is currently working to decrease gambling in the country.

One major way that he is attempting to slow things down is by banning sports betting. In 2018, Museveni declared that no new licenses would be issued for domestic sports betting companies. Those that were already issued would also not be renewed once they expired.

The major areas of concern that lead to this decision were an increase in underaged gambling, increased poverty, and gambling addictions. The impact that gambling has on the citizens of this country is not always positive. Many hear success stories and spend what little money they have trying to win a large jackpot. Because of the unhealthy mindset around gambling, the government has begun to take these measures in an effort to decrease the amount of time that its citizens spend gambling.

The Rise of Online Casinos

In the past few years, the number of people in Uganda who had access to the internet has dramatically increased. There is also a significant rise in smartphone usage. This increased connectivity, combined with the rise of online casinos, makes it easy for citizens of Uganda to continue with their gambling habits despite the discouragement from their government.

The ability to connect with online casinos from all over the world is, of course, one of the major draws of the industry. According to Lucian Marinescu of Online Casino Gems, “The industry shift from land-based casinos to online casinos is bringing in wider audiences than ever because it’s just so convenient.”

While there is growing concern from the government in Uganda, citizens won’t have to change their online gambling habits yet. The regulations that the government is sending down so far only interfere with domestic companies. Companies in other areas of the world will continue to offer services to the population of Uganda.

With such a simple alternative, it’s likely that the restrictions the government places on domestic gambling will only cause citizens to seek out other online casinos. So, these regulations will not necessarily discourage citizens from gambling, but it could decrease the amount of tax revenue that the government receives from casino games and sports betting.

Rules in Uganda

When it comes to rules that affect online gambling among Ugandans, the focus is mainly on safe and secure gambling. These safety checks are common across the entire industry, not just in Uganda, and include identity confirmation, age confirmation, and exclusion systems to reject those who are gambling illegally.

Currently, online gambling is legal in Uganda, though there was suspicion initially that the practice would be banned. However, this speculation comes from the fact that Uganda seeks to protect its own domestic gambling industry. It does not stem from any sort of fear or distaste for online gambling.

Right now, the only restriction to online gambling in Uganda that affects players is an age restriction. The legal gambling age for Ugandans is 25. In order for citizens to legally gamble, they must confirm their age and provide identification before playing.

The regulations that are in place today, specifically The Lotteries and Gaming Act of 2016 has more of an effect on the online casinos themselves rather than the players. This act repealed the National Lotteries Act and the Gaming and Pool Betting Act that were in place previously. This act ensures that the casinos are honest, trustworthy, and safe for the user. In this act, required operational licenses, capital requirements, and increased gaming tax laws are enforced on casino companies.

Conclusion

Gambling is a popular pastime in Uganda, and despite the efforts of government officials, it doesn’t seem like that’s going to change anytime soon. The only rules to keep citizens from gambling online are focused on age requirements. As long as players are of legal gambling age, they can enjoy online casino games and sports betting to their heart’s content.

With increased regulations and a looming ban on sports betting companies, it’s likely that more citizens of Uganda will turn to online casinos over the next few years so that they can continue their gambling habits.


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itel Mobile partners with Airtel Uganda to launch new smartphone

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Itel Mobile Uganda has partnered with Airtel Uganda to launch their latest smartphone device, Itel A56.

By Our Reporter

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Itel Mobile Uganda has partnered with Airtel Uganda to launch their latest smartphone device, Itel A56. The new smartphone was officially unveiled during a ceremony held at the Kampala Serena Hotel on Wednesday.

According to Bruce Ainebyoona, the product consultant at Itel Mobile, the Itel A56 comes with a bigger screen, battery and memory in comparison with its predecessor, itel A55 which was released in July last year.

The A56 packs a 4000mAh battery, 16GB of internal storage and runs on Android 9 Pie (Go edition). It also boasts of a 6 inch IPS screen which will give users a bigger view and comes with an 8MP dual rear camera setup and a 5MP selfie camera to the front.

Speaking during the launch, Henry Sajjabi, the Sales Manager itel Mobile Uganda expressed excitement about their partnership with Airtel Uganda which will see customers who purchase the itel A56 also receive free 3GB data valid for one month.

“We are here to launch more than just a smartphone device. We have partnered with Airtel Uganda to give more value to our customers.” He said.

To activate the free data bundle, customers will dial *175*90#. Upon activation, they will also receive 100% bonus for any weekly or monthly data bundle purchased over the next three months.

Mr Amit Kapur, the Airtel Uganda Chief Operations Officer reaffirmed Airtel Uganda’s commitment to the digitization of Uganda.

“At Airtel, we are committed to promoting digital inclusion through affordable data and devices and we know that Ugandans spend a huge amount of their time using the internet. It is therefore prudent to partner with an affordable smartphone company,” he noted.

The itel A56 is retailing at UGX 239,000/- and already available on the market.


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Women Groups rewarded with restaurant business equipment in Women’s Day commemoration

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Mrs. Beatrice Lugalambi, the General Manager Corporate Communications & Marketing at Centenary Bank and Mr. Kikungwe Umar, the Managing Director at Shaka Zulu Foods Limited present assorted kitchen equipment worth 20 million to the Cente SupaWoman groups.

Mrs. Beatrice Lugalambi, the General Manager Corporate Communications & Marketing at Centenary Bank and Mr. Kikungwe Umar, the Managing Director at Shaka Zulu Foods Limited present assorted kitchen equipment worth 20 million to the Cente SupaWoman groups.

By Our Reporter

Centenary Bank, the leading Microfinance institution in Uganda, in partnership with Shaka Zulu Foods Limited, a three-star restaurant in Bugolobi has rewarded Cente SupaWoman groups with assorted kitchen equipment worth Ushs. 20 million in celebration of International Women’s Day.

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The International Women’s Day is celebrated globally on 8th of March of every year, with the intention to honor women from different walks of life and who play an instrumental role in contributing to society in one way or another.

Beatrice Lugalambi, the General Manager Corporate Communications & Marketing at the bank in her remarks noted that women are taking more responsive roles in activities geared towards boosting the economy in various sectors which ties in tandem with this year’s International Women’s Day theme.

According to the 2018 Mastercard Index of Women Entrepreneurs (MIWE) report, Uganda was ranked in 1st position out of the 58 Countries that were assessed globally as the country with the highest number of women business owners.

However, women in Uganda, have continuously been challenged with access to affordable credit and apt financial literacy to be able to fund their businesses, efficiently run them and enable them grow and realize their dreams.

“Centenary Bank has continuously invested in women empowering programs in Uganda including financial literacy, funding of corporate social Initiatives aimed at training and improving the livelihood of Women and the girl child through the Cente Supawoman product,” Lugalambi highlighted.

While addressing the media, Kikungwe Umar, the Managing Director at Shaka Zulu Foods Limited, revealed that “Our decision to partner with Centenary Bank was informed by our knowledge of the women-focused initiatives championed by the bank in offering financial inclusion and women empowerment since there are immense opportunities for such businesses to thrive, given requisite support.”

Over the years, the bank has registered over 17,000 Supa women members, with over 5,000 that have accessed the bank’s credit services to start or boost their businesses.


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