The State Minister of Finance, David Bahati, has said vandalism of infrastructural raw materials and fake investments have hindered the progressive development of infrastructure in Uganda.
Bahati who was speaking during the opening the Inter-ministerial consultations on the Budget for 2020/21 Financial Year at the Ministry headquarters in Kampala on Wednesday, said even when the infrastructure is developed and contributes immensely to national development, they are being vandalised yet by Ugandans.
“Rural development entails the process of improving the quality of life and economic well-being of people living in rural areas which in many cases are relatively isolated and sparsely populated, however, we have a problem that heartless Ugandans who are seriously vandalising them and those given contracts tend to do shoddy work,” said Bahati.
The Minister, who was meeting the Infrastructure and rural development cluster – Works and Transport, Energy and Mineral Development, Information and Communications Technology (ICT) and National Guidance, Lands and Urban Development and Local Govt revealed that delays in the acquisition of right of way is also another challenge.
Others are lack of physical plans and regional economic development plans, limited sectoral and inter-sectoral coordination in the planning process are also rooming problems that the public seems not to see.
Bahati added, “Increased productivity and production in productive sectors such as agriculture, tourism, minerals, oil and gas can only be traced by upgrading our infrastructures however if vandalism and unqualified contractors are not handled, our roads are at stake.”
Bahati’s worries follow Kampala Capital City Authority disappointments for losing over 50 per cent of the solar batteries and street lights which were put on roads two-three years ago.
According to deputy spokesman KCCA Robert Kalumba, the solar street lights were installed under the second phase of Kampala Institutional and Infrastructural Development Project (KIIDP-2) funded by World Bank at a cost of Shs4.4bn.
However within central only over 100 batteries have been stolen. Currently, the affected areas include traffic lights junctions around Kabira Country Club, Fairway Junction, Nile Avenue, Kawempe-Lugoba stretch, Kibuli, Kiira Road Police Station and Jinja Road (Stretch between UMI and Airtel Roundabout).
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