Entebbe authorities, contractor clash over delayed completion of multibillion taxi park

Delayed multibillion Entebbe Kitooro taxi park. Photo/ Eve Muganga

What you need to know:

  • Construction of the project commenced seven years ago

A blame game has ensued between Entebbe Municipality leadership and a contractor with each accusing the other of being responsible for the delayed completion of the multibillion Entebbe Kitooro Taxi Park.

Construction of the project commenced seven years ago.
Although Mr Emmanuel Mugisha Gakyalo, the Entebbe Town Clerk, the Municipal Council says the contractor- Scaffold Engineers & Construction Company Ltd has on several occasions promised to hand over the project, it is evident that there is still some work to do.

“Initially, the contractor indicated that they would complete the work by the end of March this year, but weren’t able to achieve that. We have even charged the contractor liquidated damages for these delays that have happened,” he told Monitor on Thursday.
Mr Gakyalo said if the construction company had not done over 50 percent of the work, they could have terminated the contract.
“We can’t terminate the contract now because he [contractor] has promised to hand over the project by the end of this month,’’ the town clerk said.

But Mr Dineshkumar Patel, one of the proprietors of Scaffold Engineering & Construction Limited blamed the municipal council for not releasing funds on time which has slowed down their operations.
“We have not handed over the project just because there has been a consistent delay in payments and were also delays approving plans and designs, but we are making final touches to complete the work,”he said.

On whether his company will suffer liquidated damages, Mr Patel said he was not aware that municipal authorities took such a decision.
Mr Gakyalo said vendors who were previously operating in the old taxi park will be given priority upon completion of the project. 
“We documented everything, we have a register of all the people who were working in the old taxi park and I am sure some of them have letters that indicate they were indeed our former   tenants,’’ he said.

He noted that the taxis are expected to have stages from the park because they have been operating from anywhere, but need to get back into the gazetted park.
The government sanctioned the reconstruction of Kitooro Taxi Park in 2017  under the Uganda Support to Municipal Infrastructure Development (USMID) funded by the World Bank to enable Entebbe to upgrade its infrastructure in line with the municipal development vision and strategy.

The first phase of the multibillion Entebbe Kitooro Taxi Park which Wothe rld Bank funded under the Uganda Support to Municipal Infrastructure Development Programme (USMID), was completed in 2020 at a cost of Shs 7.2 billion. The second phase which was to add two floors onto the complex was estimated at a cost of Shs5 billion.