By Andrew Irumba
Kampala: In June 2019, City businessman Frank Gashumba Malingumu took telecom giant Airtel Uganda Ltd to court for releasing his personal information unto social media platforms without his consent, thereby infringing on his right to privacy, a thing Frank allege led him to loss of business associate, put his life at risk since his possible enemies could now use the information to locate his exact location, the people he was in touch with, where he sleeps, where he eats among others.
“VIOLATION OF THE RIGHT TO PRIVACY CUM NOTICE OF INTENTION TO SUE.
RE: We represent Mr. Franco Gashumba Malingumu our client, who has instructed us to address you and demand as hereunder:
Please note that our client recently discovered that information pertaining his telephone communications (both messages and voice calls) on his Airtel line, registration number 0752226622 registered In the names of Mr. Franco Gashumba Malingumu was legally and unlawfully released or caused to be released to the public by your staff and is now freely accessible by the public on social media.
Further, note that the said Information now is in the public domain, discloses our client’s phone calls made the telephone correspondences, the respondent’s telephone number, the duration of the phone call, the location from which the call is made or received.
A copy of the information, illegally released by Airtel (U) Ltd and is now in the public domain is hereto attached for your ease of reference.
We trust that, you, as the service provider and the custodian of such personal and private information are aware of the duty and obligation of confidence imposed on you by law to protect and safeguard such information against unauthorized disclosure, the failure thereof constitutes a flagrant violation of our client’s constitutional right to privacy and a breach of confidence.”
However, all the above were happening while Gashumba unsatisfactorily remained wondering how Airtel reached to an extent of exposing his privacy, and therefore, he was forced to write to the Chief Magistrates Court Wakiso, Inquiring on order of of court issued to inspect and take copies of his details of subscriber calls and data records.
It partially reads;
“RE: INQUIRY ON AN ORDER OF COURT ISSUED TO INSPECT AND TAKE COPIES OF SUBSCRIBER DETAILS OF CALLS DATA RECORDS OF MR.FRANK GASHUMBA
We are legal counsel for our client, Mr, Franco Gashumba Makingumu, and have the honour to address to you and respectfully neek your intelligence as hereunder;
Kindly note that we received “an order” purportedly issued by this Honor Court against our Client, ordering Airtel (U Ltd to allow and authorize a one Moses W. Masette to inspect copies of our clients subscriber details in so far as they relate to his Handset No. 0752-226622. Copies of the purported affidavit and order hereto attached for case of reference, An inquiry partially order read.”
After matters went worse for the court, the High Court went ahead and conducted a mediation process between Gashumba and Airtel legal team, in which they sharply disagreed to bow to Gashumba’s demands of shs500m among other prayers.
It partially reads;
“PLAINTIFF’S MEDIATION CASE SUMMARY
Brought under Rule 4 (1) & 5 of the Judicature (Mediation Rules 2013).This summary is presented in accordance with the requirements of Rule 5 of the judicature (mediation) rules, 2013.
The summary is not intended to be a substitute for or amendment of the plaintiffs pleading but rather aids to to enable the mediator familiarize him/her self with facts and issues in dispute between the parties. In the event of any inconsistency between this summary and pleadings, the pleadings shall avail, Plaintiff’s mediation summary read “
Now, after all the above solved nothing on the matter, the High Court, seating in Kampala has now decided to take on the ruling on the Civil suit No. 454 of 2019 Franco Gashumba Vs Airtel Uganda.
According to the court notice seen by TheSpy Uganda, the case has been set for hearing starting December 10 2020 at 9am, warning “if no appearance is made on your behalf , your pleader or someone by law authorized to act for you, the Suit will be heard in your absence”