By Libino Byamukama
The Kabale Municipality Mp Dr. Nicholas Thaddeus Kamara has rejuvenated protests against the delayed completion of Uganda Support to Municipality Infrastructure Development –USMID road projects that were contracted by Multiplex Construction Company.
In May 2021, the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development, through its World Bank Funded Program, handed over three road construction projects in Kabale Municipality to Multiplex contractors for tarmacking. The roads include Rushoroza(2.049Kms), Bwankosya (0.76Km) and Bushekwire (0.34 Km).
The projects worth Ugx 21 billion were supposed to be completed before May 2021 according to the terms of the contract. However, by the time of filing this story, Multiplex Company had only completed 37.5% of the expected works, despite asking for contract extension three times, according to the Kabale Municipality USMID Program coordinator Alfred Ahimbisibwe.
In a meeting chaired by Hon. Dr. Kamara at Capricon Hotel in Kabale town yesterday, Mr. Ahimbisibwe revealed that out of the Ugx 21 billion, the contractor had only utilized about 7 billion and there was little or no hopes that Multiplex company would meet the last deadline extension which runs up to 31st January 2023.
It’s on this note that Dr. Kamara called for the immediate termination of the contract arguing that Multiplex Company had shown all the signs that they were unable to complete the construction projects. Kamara, who in August this year delivered Kabale municipality’s petition to parliament over the same issue, said that he was going to rejuvenate the debate in parliament.
“This town serves not only Kabale Municipality, but also Rubanda and Rukiga Districts. In future when we attain city status, these road projects will also be important for people in the entire Kigezi sub region, and therefore the matter should be in the interest of all Mps from Kigezi,” Kamara said.
The Assistant Commissioner Monitoring and Evaluation in the Ministry of Lands. Housing and Urban Development, Smith Twinamasiko said that the Ministry was considering “so many” options before terminating the contract given to Multiplex company, including the need for subcontracting another company to finish the job in time.
According to Twinamasiko, the USMID Program ends in December 2023, and the World Bank would take back the unused funds if the projects are not completed by that time.
Meanwhile, Multiplex company limited is facing similar protests in Mbarara City and Ntungamo Municipality where the leaders have also called for termination of its contracts.
Ntungamo and Mabarara also entered into agreement with Multiplex Company in joint venture with Turkish company Ditaco, to construct Major Victor Bwama road (0.95km), Galt road(0.63km), and Stanley road (0.78km) in Mbarara city at Ugx 22 billion. In Ntungamo Municipality, the contractors are working on Kajinya-Tindibakira road 92.07km)
The districts entered into an agreement with Multiplex Limited, in a joint Venture with Ditaco, to construct Major Victor Bwana road (0.95km), Galt road (0.63km), and Stanley Road (0.78km) in Mbarara City at Shs22b. The roads in Ntungamo Municipality including Kajinya-Tindibakira were contracted at a tune of Ug.x 11.39b.
All the road projects were supposed to be handed over in May 2022, but the contractor still hasn’t completed works and is seeking more extension.