UGANDA, Kampala | Real Muloodi News | The Ugandan government has halted its plans to upgrade more municipalities to city status, according to the State Minister of Finance in charge of General Duties, Henry Musasizi.
Musasizi said that the Ministry of Finance had advised President Yoweri Museveni that the creation of additional cities only results in more expenses, such as those incurred by administrators, MPs, and Lord Mayors.
“The President has therefore asked us to tell the public that people should focus on working harder as a way of developing their household incomes and to engage themselves in the government programs such as parish development model and to get government loans from banks, rather than focusing on cities,” Musasizi said.
The announcement was made during a thanksgiving event held at St Mary’s Cathedral Rushoroza located at Rushoroza Hill in Kabale Municipality, where Musasizi is the Rubanda East MP and Rubanda District NRM Chairperson.
Kabale was among the 15 municipalities approved by the cabinet to have city status in a phased manner.
The first lot included Arua, Gulu, Jinja, Fort Portal, and Mbarara, followed by Hoima and Mbale in the second cohort.
Others set to be upgraded to city status include Nakasongola, Moroto, Masaka, Soroti, Kabale, and Wakiso. Kabale’s city boundary consultations were scheduled to occur in 2025.
The decision was made after it was determined that upgrading municipalities to cities could lead to increased expenses for the government, which is already under significant financial strain.
While residents in Kabale and other municipalities may be disappointed, the government has suggested that residents focus on participating in government programs, such as the parish development model, and obtaining loans from banks to improve their household incomes, rather than seeking city status upgrades.
Proceedings from the thanksgiving ceremony held at St Mary’s Cathedral Rushoroza will be used to fund the paving of the Cathedral Yard, tiling the floor, and beautifying the veranda with Terrazzo.
Despite the government’s decision, local officials and residents in Kabale and other municipalities will likely continue to advocate for city status, as it can bring benefits such as improved infrastructure and increased investment.
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