Kampala Capital City Authority has launched a web-based platform through which the public can monitor city projects and public works.
Through the platform dubbed the “Uganda system for electronic open data records” the public, civil society and contractors can access information on city infrastructure in order to monitor ongoing works and provide feedback.
According to the Minister for Kampala Beti Kamya who was chief guest at the launch, this platform will enable continuous communication about city projects and promote a culture of accountability and transparency on city programmes.
The portal was developed in collaboration with the Anti-Corruption Coalition Uganda with funding from UNDP.
Kamya notes that the ability of national accountability institutions to exercise effective control of corruption is handicapped by multiple factors including gaps in policy, legal and regulatory frameworks as well as weak public demand for accountability adding that 300m dollars annually is lost through corruption in the public sector.
As a result she notes that the government with support from the UNDP is implementing the institutional effectiveness programme which is one of the three components of the inclusive and effective governance pillar of the UNDP country programme 2016-2020.
“Under the programmed UNDP continues to provide upstream support targeting relevant MDAs and key non state institutions to ensure that gaps in public sector policies, legal and regulatory frameworks and operational mechanism that impede effectiveness in public sector management are eliminated.” She stated in her address.
She says that as a consequence public demand for accountability and transparency should increase and contribute to a culture of zero tolerance to corruption in Uganda.
She stated that the launch of the USER portal is a demonstration of the government’s efforts to promote transparency in all its projects.
“Under the institutional effectiveness programme support was provided through the OPM to pilot the clean construction open data system in selected infrastructure investments in 2 local governments and KCCA.” she revealed.
According to the deputy Executive Director of KCCA Sam Serunkuma the overall target is to have a fully-fledged system that is interactive and allowing for a 24hr interaction with the citizens in real time and with a capacity to support large data and images.
He adds that they hope to link the system to with procurement and payments systems.
Marlon Agaba from ACCU informed the meeting that the USER platform is a twin innovation based on a similar portal developed by the Seoul Metropolitan authority in S. Korea following a series of calamities caused by collapse of a number of structures.
He notes that the web platform has a section for comments by the public on a project of their interest, the system is updated every day at midnight but he notes that there are plans to make in updated in real-time.
The comments are directed to KCCA and ACCU which ensures that action has been taken on the various concerns raised by the public.