New ministers appointed to trade and energy ministries

President Yoweri Museveni has made changes in his cabinet, appointing a military general to the trade ministry and a youth leader to the lucrative ministry of energy.

In the changes announced late last month, the President named General Wilson Mbadi, the former Chief of Defense Forces as state minister for trade, industry and cooperatives.

The President also named Phiona Nyamutoro as minister of state for energy and mineral development. She will specifically be in charge of minerals.

“I am delighted to take on from my senior Hon. Peter Lokeris to establish, promote the development, strategically manage and safeguard the rational and sustainable exploitation and utilisation of energy and mineral resources for social and economic development,” the youthful minister said shortly after taking over office.

According to Uganda Investment Authority (UIA) more than 80% of the country has been surveyed for mineral quantities and locations.

“New geo-data shows that Uganda has large underexploited mineral deposits of gold, oil, high grade tin, tungsten/wolfram, salt, beryllium, cobalt, kaolin, iron ore, glass sand, vermiculite, phosphates (agricultural fertiliser), uranium and rare earth elements,” UIA states.

“There are also significant quantities of clay and gypsum. Investment opportunities exist in mining and mineral processing with special incentives provided to the mining sector, including writing off capital expenditures in full,” the investment body adds.

Nyamutoro will be charged with working with other state bodies and the private sector to ensure that the minerals are fully exploited for the benefit of Ugandans.

The President urged the new ministers to fight corruption and promote wealth creation.

“I congratulate the ministers and urge them to focus on fighting corruption and mobilizing the masses towards wealth creation,” the head of state said.

“Corruption is a disruptor since it undermines a lot of efforts, but if they focus on these two things -fighting it and teaching the masses to create wealth, 80 percent of the work will be done,” the President added.

The other new ministerial appointees were Lillian Aber (State for Relief, Disaster Preparedness and Refugees), Dr Kenneth Omona (State for Northern Uganda), Florence Wamala Nambozo (State for Karamoja Affairs), and Balaam Barugahara (State for Youth and Children).

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