WAKISO/KAMPALA – The completion of the second phase of construction of the Northern Bypass has been hampered by land wrangles and astronomical demands for compensation, the Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA) has said.
UNRA executive director Allen Kagina said that the works on the road are at 51% complete but that more work could have been done by the contractor by now if disputed compensation amounts, uncooperative estates administrators, multiple claimants and family conflicts were not existent.
She made the remarks on Thursday, December 6 while leading ministers Matia Kasaija (Finance) and Gen Katumba Wamala (State, Works,) and European Union Head of Delegation Attilio Pacifici on a tour of the road. The road is being expanded with funding from the EU and other partners.
Works started in July 2017 and end in 2021.
Kagina said as of November, at least 95% of required land for expansion was accessible to the contractor although only 75% of the Project Affected persons had been fully compensated.
Nevertheless, Pacifici was impressed by the works on the road and pledged further support for other projects such as the construction of the Jinja Road project.
The current phase that will upgrade the road to four carriages is consuming Euros 40m that came from EU as a grant on the addition to an extra Euro 7.2m which government borrowed from the European Investment Bank.
On completion, the project is expected to improve city mobility and to relieve city traffic and reduce travel costs and time and protect the city from heavy trucks.
The current phase includes a carriageway of 17.5km length.
At least three new footbridges at Kyebando, Ntinda and Naalya will add to statistics of those already in place so that there is a safe pedestrian crossing.
Six new interchanges are being created at Sentema road, Hoima and Gayaza road. Others are at Bukoto-Kyebando, Ntinda and Naalya roads.
“There will be segregated facilities for cyclists and pedestrians, improved lighting, signalled junctions, full-length central reserves and safety barriers,” UNRA’s Jude Kyobe who is the roads resident engineer said.
To achieve full functionality, Gen. Katuba said that in January 2019 flyovers will be commissioned to connect from Nakumatt- Nakawa and Clock Tower. The second phase will connect to Kibuye and later to Busega.
Katumba also said that Busega- Mpigi is due soon.