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Top Story: URA boss Accused Of Lying About Invesco South Sudan Cargo Deals

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Acting on behalf of his Principal or Master (K-Polygenese SAS Multinational), Edgar David Musoke Nsubuga (who heads their Ugandan agent Lincoln Logistics Ltd as General Manager) has broken the silence and accused URA Assistant Commissioner Julius Nkwasire Mponooka for accepting to be misled and used by the executives of a Ugandan company called INVESCO in the service of whose interests he ended up lying in a media interview last week.

In a New Vision story, Mponooka was quoted as saying things which had the effect of unnecessarily rasing the profile of INVESCO while exaggerating their cargo clearance-related dealings with the government of DRC.

The same media story, which the K-Polygene SAS executives now say was deliberately calculated to undermine them while raising the profile of INVESCO, deceptively indicated that K-Polygene SAS remains suspended from doing cargo tracking and importation clearing work for the government of South Sudan had been suspended for failing to do the job as contract. This is totally untrue because the short lived suspension was, in writing, lifted and brought to and end long ago.

In a widely circulated media statement this Monday, K-Polygene SAS executives castigated their INVESCO counterparts for deliberately misleading URA through AC Mponooka regarding the true position of things. That this was all deliberately meant to tarnish the image of K-Polygene SAS while making INVESCO seem greater than it actually is.

That the contract that was referred to in the New Vision story as existing between INVESCO and South Sudan through its Revenue Authority, regarding the handling of import and export or even transit good, actually doesn’t exist.

The K-Polygene media release of Monday challenges Mponooka and his INVESCO allies to publicize any if such contract actually does exist. They demand sanction against the rogue-minded actors involved for deliberately misleading both URA and the public.

It’s further clarified that even in DRC, INVESCO has no direct contractual relationship with the government of Kinshasa to do any imports and cargo-clearing errands there. That they are mere 3rd party actors having been sub contracted by TRANSCOM which was directly hired by the DRC government along with K-Polygene SAS Multinational, an internationally acclaimed company headquartered in France with combined joint ownership hailing from France and Canada.

That because of its globally acclaimed standards, reputation and capabilities, K-Polygene (which the New Vision story disparaged) is already doing plenty of cargo-related standards enforcement work in a number of countries where it deals directly with governments unlike INVESCO which is always brought in as a 3rd party with limited capacity, limited experience and professionalism.

The globally-acclaimed and easily visible K-Polygene is already doing large cargo and imports-clearance jobs on behalf of governments in countries like Benin, Gambia, DRC, South Africa, Congo, Guinea Bissau, CAR, Zambia, Kenya, South Sudan, Uganda (through MS Lincoln Logistics Ltd) and Tanzania.

They are equally present and doing work in France, Switzerland, India, Canada, North America and Hong Kong. That in all these places, they have performed their contractual obligations in a manner that exceeded expectations of their clients who are chiefly governments.

The statement further explains that the temporary suspension preventing K-Polygene not to do work for South Sudan was an outcome of contractual breaches which had been committed by INVESCO which had been sub contracted by their other primary party to the contract with the government of South Sudan through its Trade Ministry.

That, encouraged by URA, INVESCO concentrated on militarizing compliance operations which caused long queues and endless heavy trucks traffic jams as business and diplomatic cargo got held up and thereby frustrating individual actors and entities that were meant to be served under the arrangement during the contracting period. Apparently, INVESCO used militarized operations to cover up for its staffing and professionalism-related inadequacies.

And gratefully, having established where the problem was emanating from, the Trade Ministry of South Sudan (through the actions and writings of Minister Kuol Athien Mawien and Under Secretary Mary Aketch Milla) has since reinstated the contractual relationship with K-Polygene SAS Multinational.

Following up on the earlier one, a South Sudan Trade Ministry letter of 27th March 2023 makes it clear that K-Polygene is the sole provider of imports and cargo-clearance-related services for the government of South Sudan relating to importation and exportation at all its ports.

In the same letter, the K-Polygene Director is asked by Aketch Milla to closely with the South Sudan Revenue Authority and its Commissioner General to carry out its compliance-related work besides Crawford Capital Ltd which is the other only mandated entity and no one else. The same South Sudan Ministerial directive, which is in writing, requires K-Polygene to effect the installation of scanners at Nimule border point and the Electronic Cargo Tracking Notes (ECTN).

The same K-Polygene, incorporated in France in 2015, is directed to work with the South Sudan Ministry of Roads & Bridges and the National Roads Authority to begin constructing the weigh bridges component of the contract across the country.

They are also directed to work with the Trade Ministry of South Sudan to commence on the construction of the dry port besides the establishment of Trade Facilitation Portal to facilitate international trade for the benefit of the economy of South Sudan.

The media statement also sets the record straight on the range of technological & functional solutions and services which the company (K-Polygene) offers in the different powerful countries of the world where it has a presence and operates from.

These include consultancy services to governments, system audits, data analysis, change management, project management offices, business intelligence digitization, GPS tracking, satellite tracking, custom automation and VAT & e-taxes collection. And remarkably, the company’s standards are globally comparable as is evidenced by the several ISO certifications which have been obtained over the years.

In the same media statement, K-Polygene raises a red flag by highlighting some of the problems likely to be encountered if the recent MoU between URA and INVESCO obliging the latter to carry out certification of all cargo originating from or transiting through Uganda and heading to DRC and South Sudan is allowed to stand. That the poor performance-related issues which prompted the government of South Sudan to suspend work some three years ago will most likely end up constraining this MoU’s effective operationalization.

That given its limited capacity and competence-related constraints, INVESCO will simply never be able to satisfactorily comply with the set trade facilitation guidelines and standards as stipulated by World Customs Organization. That this actually made whatever involvement INVESCO had into the South Sudan situation to become synonymous with being a non-trade barrier to trade as opposed to being an enabler of trade.

The K-Polygene executives further reject claims in the impugned New Vision story that merely because they are sub contractors of TRANSCOM, which has a direct contract with the DRC government, INVESCO has or will be having access to the database of all taxpayers in DRC which isn’t the case. That all this was said and corroborated by the URA Assistant Commissioner Mponooka in a bid to raise the profile and performance experience of INVESCO while downplaying the capabilities, reputation and good name of K-Polygene.

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