Kampala- .From the resource envelope of Shs14 trillion, the Works and Transport Sector has taken the lead again in the budgetary allocation for the financial year 2014/2015, starting July
The ministry will get Shs2.6 trillion, up from last year’s Shs2.51 trillion, which represents 18 per cent of the envelope.
The Finance minister, Maria Kiwanuka, presenting the budget yesterday, said the allocation will be used to upgrade from gravel to bitumen, a total of 200 kilometers of roads and reconstruct other 178 kilometers.
Ten new bridges will be constructed, seven others rehabilitated, in addition to regrading 12, 875 kilometers unpaved roads.
Ms Kiwanuka said government will accelerate the construction of at least 1,700km of some on-going road projects such as the Vura-Arua-Oraba upgrade, Buteraniro-Ntungamo-Rwentobo and Ntungamao-Kabale-Katuna.
Others include Hoima-Kaiso-Tonya, Kampala-Mukono-Jinja, Gulu-Atiak-Nimule upgrade, Ishasha-Kagamba, Kampala-Express Highway, Moroto-Nakapiripirti, Kafu-Kiryandongo, Luuku-Kalangla upgrade, among others.
Construction on 650 km road projects like Kabwoya-Kyenjojo, Tirinyi-Pallisa-Kumi/Kamonkoli, Kapchorwa-Suam and Rukungiri-Kihihi-Ishasha-Kambuga, among others, will also be undertaken.
She further added that an additional Shs75 billion has been allocated to the Uganda Road Fund (URF) to “facilitate the maintenance and rehabilitate” approximately 10,000 km of national, district, and urban roads— including community access roads.
Ms Kiwanuka reiterated government’s efforts, together with other East African Community partner states, to invigorate the railway transport system. The leaders of Kenya, Rwanda and Uganda early last month inked a deal with China to fund and construct Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) across the region.
The minister, however, revealed that plans to upgrade the SGR section of the Tororo-Kasese and Mirama Hills in Rwanda will commence this year, as well as construction of an inland container deport at Mukono and redevelopment of facilities at Port Bell and Jinja piers (landing sites).
The government puts the proportion of the national unpaved road network in fairly good conditions at 66 per cent and that of the national pave network at 77 per cent.
“Our target is to improve the condition of these roads further to 77 per cent and 85 per cent respectively over the medium term,” the minister said.