Museveni wants Kapeeka upgraded to municipality

Saturday December 7 2019

Inspection.  President Museveni (right)

Inspection. President Museveni (right) inspects Lurtex Textile Industry which is among the factories he commissioned at the Liao Shen Industrial Park in Kapeeka, Nakaseke District on Thursday. PHOTO BY DAN WANDERA.  

By DAN WANDERA

President Museveni has advised Nakaseke District authorities to quickly upgrade Kapeeka Sub-county to town council or municipality status to align its activities with several factories that have transformed the area to an industrial hub in Uganda.
He said Kapeeka Sub-county should not be managed as a rural agricultural area yet it boasts of more than 13 factories, employing more than 2,400 workers.
“I have heard the worry expressed by Gen Salim Saleh about the status of Kapeeka Sub-county that has remained rural, yet it now hosts an industrial park. Kapeeka should be upgraded to a town council or a municipality to align its capacity in terms of planning. This area should not be managed as a rural agricultural unit,” Mr Museveni told the guests and Nakaseke residents.
The president, who had just commissioned five factories at the Liao Shen Industrial park on Thursday, said: “Nobody knew that this area would once host such a big number of factories. You have heard from the management of the Liao Shen Industrial complex that the target is to shoot to 30 factories by 2020. I know that these Chinese investors do not joke. They are serious and will make it.”
Mr Museveni said his younger brother, Gen Saleh, at one time approached him with the intension of selling off the land at Kapeeka that now hosts the industrial park.
“He was broke, but I told him to drop the idea and this is the land now hosting the industrial park. This is how we have managed to get land for the industrial parks, including the 600 acres in Mbale, the more than five square mile land at Kaweweta in Nakaseke District that government bought from the cooperative unions. These will all host industrial parks, Mr Museveni said.
“At the Kisozi government ranch, the civil servants stole all the government cows and left the ranch empty. This is not the Kisozi farm that I own, but the government ranch that is much bigger than my farm in the same area. We have kept this land at Kisozi and we shall get investors to put up factories,” he said.
“It is interesting that Mr Simon D’Ujanga, the State minister for Energy, has confessed that they have been able to save some money by using our own engineers and surveyors to build a 100MW sub-station power station, saving about Shs3b of the Shs20b that had been budgeted. They did not go for the contractors who are sometimes very expensive. Here D’Ujanga has woken up. This is the way to go. We have a problem with civil servants and politicians in Uganda, but we have now found a solution. Those who fail to wake up should go and rare goats. We shall not live them in office,” Museveni said on Thursday.
Earlier, Gen Saleh had told the President that he was growing impatient with the lesser developed area of Kapeeka Sub-county that is now surrounded with an industrial park with booming business.
“We have been able to develop the 5.2 square miles into an industrial park and by 2022, the industrial park will be at full operational capacity. My worry now is with the remaining 5.2 square miles that is the immediate neighbour of the industrial park. We have $600m (Shs2.2trillion)investment in one area as industrial park but Kapeeka Sub-county that is the administrative unit is managed and run using an annual budget of Shs231m. This cannot help. We need your advice, Gen Saleh told the President.
Mr Zhang Hao, the chairman of China –Uganda Liao Shen Industrial Park, said despite their achievements at the industrial park, the management wants government to address the high power tariffs charged by the electricity regulatory body, the road network from Matugga to Kapeeka, and the lack of a sewerage management system.
Mr Zhang criticised the slow response by the Immigration office in processing work permits for foreigners and the lack of a garbage dumping site for Kapeeka area, yet it has both the business area and the industrial park.
COMMISSIONED
The 100MW power sub-station at the industrial park, the Farm Science Centre, ICD Container Depot for URA, Gaga Foods factory, Lurtex Textile factory, Electronics factory, Oshta Ug Fishnet manufacturing factory, the Liao Shen administration offices, Nana Shoes factory and the Dragon and Phoenix factory.

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