KAMPALA- The Uganda National Roads Authority (Unra) has said there will be no more new roads outside what they have embarked on already in the financial year which starts today in order to allow absorption of the ongoing works and ensure their completion on schedule.
The move, according to Unra executive director Allen Kagina, is to ensure government gets “value for money from the investments in the ongoing projects through improved management and supervision of projects while continuing engagements with development partners.”
Ms Kagina, while addressing journalists about highlights of the last financial year at the Unra head office in Kampala yesterday, explained that the move is also premised on budgetary constraints.
The roads development budget (mainly construction of new ones) is allocated approximately 90 per cent of all funding provided which means that Unra’s performance is highly dependent on performance and progress of the new projects. Only 7 percent goes to road maintenance.
“But while the government road development programme has been growing, medium term expenditure framework ceiling for Unra has been the same,” she said, adding that “this has resulted in the ongoing and planned programme having a deficit of Shs1.7 trillion.”
“The successful implementation of the entire programme [new roads] will depend on the financing availed in the subsequent years.”
Throughout the year, Ms Kagina, who was flanked by other directors, said works will continue on at least 1,000km of ongoing projects using funds already allocated; the plan is to have at least 200km of paved roads added to the network and another 185km rehabilitated.
“Contracts will be signed for projects for which funding is available, and for other roads we shall continue either updating their designs or working on the designs such that when funding is next available then we shall immediately kick off.”
The head of road development Chris Manyindo, however, explained that the move only applies to government-funded projects.
“Donor-funded projects will continue, and shall start immediately when they avail money,” he said.
The works and transport sector was allocated Shs3.6 trillion in the new budget, half of which is going to the development of the ambitious Standard Gauge Railway project.
Ms Kagina who was appointed Unra executive director on May 1 last year and immediately embarked on restructuring the entire organisation and recruiting new staff in an attempt to scale up manpower to the 1,700 organisational capacity.
Out of the Shs1.2 trillion allocated to Unra in the last financial year, Kagina reported that only Shs1 trillion was released and Shs58 billion remained outstanding.
• Kampala-Entebbe express way with a spur to Munyonyo (51Km)
• Mpigi-Kanoni (65Km)
• Kampala Northern By-pass (17Km)
• Kanoni-Sembabule-Villa Maria (110Km)
• Mukono-Kayunga-Njeru (94Km)
• Pakwach-Nebbi (54Km)
• Olwiyo(Anaka)-Gulu (70Km)
• Ntungamo-Mirama Hills (37Km)
• Musita-Mayuge-Lumino-Busia/Majanji (104Km) 40%
• Namunsi-Sironko-Muyembe (32Km)
Roads whose construction is due to start:
• Hoima-Wanseko (111km)
• Rwekunye-Apac-Lira-Acholibur (243km)
•Mubende-Kagadi-Ndaiga(140km): Lira-Kamdini (66km)
• Dualling Kibuye-Busega-Mpigi (33km)
• Kampala-Jinja (77km)
• Kampala Southern By-pass (18km), and Masaka-Bukakata (41km).
Others: Kyenjojo-Hoima-Masindi-Kigumba (238km): Tirinyi-Pallisa-Kumi/Pallisa-Mbale (111km): Mbale-Bubulo-Magale/Lwakhakha (45km): Rukungiri-Kihihi-Ishasha/Kanungu (78km): Kapchorwa-Suam (77km): Muyembe-Nakapiripirit (92km): Buhuka-Kabwoya (43km): Ntoroko-Karugutu (53km): Mbale-Nkokonjeru (21km), and Luuku-Kalangala (60km) phase II.
The superhighways: the Kampala-Jinja Expressway (77km)-a 8-4 lane super highway, whose designs have been completed and procurement for a contractor will start later this year: Kampala-Mpigi Expressway (32km)-a 4 lane super highway, whose designs have been completed as well and construction to start later this year will be financed with a loan from the African Development Bank, and the Kampala Bombo Expressway (50km) whose designs are set to be completed anytime.