• Sun. Jan 29th, 2023

UGANDAKampala | Real Muloodi News | Lawmakers have demanded for accountability from Kampala City officials for the $288 million (about USh1 trillion) loan they received from the African Development Bank (AFDB) to rebuild 29 roads in the municipality.

Deputy Speaker Thomas Tayebwa, while presiding over the house on Monday 9 January 2023, sought to know why the Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) had started with merely fixing potholes, while the government through Parliament had funding for reconstructing the roads in Kampala City.

With the support of legislators from all political parties, Mr Tayebwa requested answers for the $288 million loan that the 10th Parliament approved roughly two years ago which was intended to help with the rebuilding of 29 highways and other road infrastructure.

In addition, he urged the Executive Director of the KCCA, Ms Dorothy Kisaka, and the Minister of Kampala and Metropolitan Affairs, Ms Minsa Kabanda, to explain why the majority of city roads still had potholes.

When Ms Kisaka was questioned about the road funding, she stated that $246 million of the $288 million had been allotted to city building projects and related civil works.

“KCCA will construct 69.70km of roads, which is equivalent of 83.7km single carriageways since some of the road sections will be dual carriage ways complete with associated drainage works, including improvement to 22 traffic junctions, 123 non-motorised transport facilities such as Luwum Street, commercial vehicles parking places, bus depots, 30 public toilets, six markets on project roads for women vendor, installation of 1,600 energy efficient street lights and landscaping with tree planting,” she said.

She reaffirmed that $14.95 million will be used for project management, including hiring experts, carrying out technical project audits, monitoring and evaluation, and providing technical help for public transportation.

Institutional capacity building will receive $3.6 million in funding, women’s and youth skill empowerment will receive $250,000, and project compensation and resettlement will receive at least $11 million in funding.

Ms Kisaka added: “The period, 2021 to 2022, has been utilised for the protracted and competitive procurement processes. This involved international bidding, bid submission, evaluation committees, best evaluated bidder notice, contracts Committee approval, and finally, the legal approval from the Solicitor General. KCCA got clearance for the project from the Attorney General’s chambers in July 2022.”

According to representatives of the KCCA, under the terms of the proposal, the Ministry of Finance would deal directly with the release of the project’s funding on behalf of the government and the lending bank.

The contractors for the different road projects are currently preparing to start the civil works by mobilising.

“There is no need for alarm, this project started in 2016 and is ready for delivery to the city. It has been a six-year pregnancy. The NRM Manifesto promises to deliver 100km of roads in the city by 2026. We are on course, and this is one of the key projects that will deliver the NRM Manifesto,” Ms Kisaka said.

She added that all relevant government ministries, departments, and agencies, including the Attorney General, Works, and Finance, participate in the project’s decision-making during its entire lifecycle.

According to representatives of the ministry of finance, the African Development Bank, which supplied the government with the financing, approved the project’s design, the project design scope, and the choice of contractors.

The KCCA executive director stated that since the project’s inception in 2016, the political leaders have supervised the technical leaders without going into further detail.

She emphasised that the budgets for the fiscal years 2021–2022 and 2022–2023 took into account all of the data.

“Government processes are public and the legislative arm of the city,” Ms Kisaka said.

After taking into account the economic advantages it would bring to the city and the number of covered roadways, Parliament authorised the loan in 2020.

“That is 69.70 Km of roads. Some of the roads will be dual carriageway, thus increasing the length by 14km, complete with associated drainage works 22 traffic junctions. In addition, there will be 123km of non-motorised transport facilities such as Luwum Street,” Ms Kisaka said.

She further said that the funding arrangement was approved by the Ministry of Finance in May 2021 with the predetermined terms and circumstances, which included road costs for five lots of roads in various divisions. The project has received $288 million in financing in total.

She said that the lengthy and competitive procurement processes took place between 2021 and 2022 and that KCCA received approval for the project from the Attorney General’s chambers in July 2022.

Project Modifications

According to Ms Kisaka, the proposal was reassessed in 2021 to remove the green buses and replace them with more roadways.

A total of $12 million that had been set out for the purchase of eco buses was instead used to build new city-serving highways.

These include the Old Kira Road, Ntinda-Kampala Northern Bypass, and Mpererwe-Kiteezi-Kiti Road, which together add 16.37km to the whole length.

However, after conducting an examination, additional city authorities found that 100km is made up of 69.7km, 14km of dual carriage, and 16.37km of project adjustment.

Planned Initiatives

The length of the road will be extended by 14 km by certain dual-carriageway portions, along with accompanying drainage improvements and 22 traffic signal intersections. There will also be 123 km of non-motorized transportation infrastructure.

“We shall have commercial vehicles parking places, bus depots, 30 public toilets, six markets along project roads for women vendors, installation of 1,600 energy efficient streetlights, and landscaping with tree planting,” Ms Kisaka said.

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