National Housing set to resume low-cost estates

Officials tour the National Housing and Construction Corporation Impala Apartments in Namungoona on Tuesday. PHOTO BY STEPHEN OTAGE

What you need to know:

Ready to work. The corporation says it has got Shs32b to resume constructing estates in Mbarara and Kabale districts.

Kampala. National Housing and Construction Corporation (NHCC) has said they are resuming the construction of low cost housing estates countrywide to address the housing needs of the middle-income population.

While commissioning the NHCC Impala Apartments in Namungoona on Tuesday, Mr Parity Twinomujuni, the NHCC chief executive officer, said during its inception in 1953, NHCC was meant to construct low cost houses to sell to Ugandans in a profitable and sustainable manner so that they live in organised settlements.
However, when president Idi Amin took over power in 1971, that vision was lost and the subsequent governments never bothered to maintain that vision.

“We constructed estates in Bugolobi, Kyambogo, Jinja, Mbarara, Kabale and other major towns and there was an impact on the quality of lives of people living there,” he said.
He added that with a $ 9.5m (Shs32b) funding from Shelter Afrique, the corporation has started constructing similar estates in Mbarara and Kabale districts to resume the project because NHCC has developed the capacity to carry out such projects.

The minister of Finance, Mr Matia Kasaija, who commissioned the apartments, urged the corporation to carry out research on cheaper construction materials so that Ugandans can be able to buy good quality but cheaper houses.

Target market
He added that NHCC should embark on conducting business in a competitive and profitable way because the housing market is available.

“Teachers, doctors, Prisons, Police and other civil servants all need accommodation. We have foreign companies doing big construction projects here because there is no single company which has demonstrated competence to manage these contracts,” Mr Kasaija said, adding that NHCC should diversify to roads, bridges and dams.