Leaders reject grader-fund proposal

Friday April 24 2015

Wakiso District chairperson Mathias Lwanga Bwanika

Wakiso District chairperson Mathias Lwanga Bwanika speaks during the meeting at the district headquarters on Wednesday. Left is NRM vice chairperson, Hajj Moses Kigongo. PHOTO BY DOMINIC BUKENYA 

By Peter Mwayi

Wakiso- Wakiso District local council chairpersons have rejected a proposal by the district council to have every administrative unit contribute 50 per cent of their local revenue to buy a grader for the district.

During a meeting for all chairpersons from LC1 to LC5 at the district headquarters on Wednesday, the Chief Administrative Officer, Mr David Kigenyi Naluwayiro, said Wakiso being the biggest district with the biggest road network receives a small budget for roadworks.
Mr Naluwayiro said there is need for the district to devise its own means of working on its 3,000kms of roads.

The district chairperson, Mr Matia Lwanga Bwanika, informed the meeting that the district has three graders but they were all dysfunctional.

“The graders that were purchased for us, even in their new form, can hardly work on a kilometre of road a day. They are now worn out and parked at the district headquarters,” Mr Bwanika said.

The meeting was also attended by NRM party vice chairperson, Hajj Moses Kigongo, who is a resident of the district. Mr Bwanika added that the Ministry of Finance allocates Shs1.4 billion annually for road maintenance in Wakiso which is way smaller than that of Kampala which has only 300 kilometres of roads.

He called on chairpersons to embrace the proposal that 50 per cent of the local revenue collected at every administrative unit for one year is used for the purchase of a grader.

The council’s proposal was however met with some resistance from councillors most of whom heckled Mr Bwanika as he spoke. Some said they were receiving little pay wondering how it could again be subjected to deductions.
The Kiryamuli parish chairperson, Mr Muhammad Jjuuko kiryowa, rejected the proposal saying, last year he contacted the district to work on roads in his parish but they refused saying they did not work on “small roads”.

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“I personally contacted them and they refused saying they don’t work on community roads as if we do not belong to Wakiso District,” Mr Kiryowa said, adding: “However, when I got money to hire a grader, I was surprised that the machines which came to work on my road were those owned by Wakiso District. How then could graders which were very busy working on district roads be available for hire.”

The verdict
In an interview with Daily Monitor, Mr Bwanika said the chairpersons misunderstood his proposal thinking he was suggesting that they contribute 50 per cent of the Shs120, 000 which government pays every chairperson annually. He said his was a proposal that the contributions come from the money allocated to every administrative unit under the Local Government Act. He said when revenue is collected at every unit, it is redistributed to units so that 35 per cent goes to the district and 65 per cent goes to sub-counties.

pmwayi@ug.nationmedia.com

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