Tuesday July 1 2014

New committee to monitor road contracts

Mbale-Soroti road under construction.

Mbale-Soroti road under construction. Multi-stakeholder group will help to streamline government contracts. PHOTO BY Brian ssenoga 

By Brian Ssenoga


Corruption has had a major impact on the awarding of contracts in the procurement and tendering process in Uganda.
The unfortunate development has led to some contractors to produce shoddy work while others fail to deliver on time.

However, in order to fight the vice, the civil society and Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA) on June 23, named a team of nine people comprising of members from the civil society, government and the private sector, especially those in the roads construction sector, to monitor government projects across the country.

Code-named multi-stakeholder group, the team is charged with disclosing information about government contracts. According to Mr Ssebbugga Kimeze, the acting executive director UNRA, the move is intended to promote trust and transparency in all road construction projects at all levels as a tool to ease information flow and fight corruption during the procurement process.

“Government has been working on procurement processes in the roads sector without necessarily involving the civil society, which essentially represents the public. With this team, we are to share all the information with all stakeholders,” Mr Kimeze said.

The new initiative is spearheaded by the Construction Sector Transparency Initiative, which encourages a multi-stakeholder approach, which brings together government, the private sector and civil society to pursue a common goal of openness and free information sharing on any tendering processes, including the large procurements to create a level ground for all competing bidders.

Mr Gordon Tusiime, the managing director Conrad Engineering Works Ltd, said the initiative will create public ownership of property since all stakeholders will have access to project information as and when it is required.