KAMULI – The Deputy Prime Minister & Minister for East African Community, Rebecca Alitwala Kadaga in company of Lands Minister Judith Nabakooba have launched the commencement of construction of the first batch of infrastructure sub-projects under the USMID program in Kamuli Municipality.
The duo that was in the district on January 28 toured the different road sections that the project is set to encompass and were impressed by the readiness of M/S. Sterling Civil Engineering Limited to take on the job.
Nabakooba thanked Kadaga who is also the Kamuli District Woman MP for the great role she played during the preparation of the USMID-AF program, remembering her people of Kamuli, and ensuring they qualified to be part of the USMID program.
She explained that it is Kadaga’s stewardship that made kamuli make it to the USMID beneficiaries beating the many other urban centres that up to now wish to join the program, something she said is still impossible.
“Today, the projects we are flagging off; Baino road and Industrial road for commencement of works were selected by yourselves, and I urge you Kamuli Municipality leadership to ensure that the contractor delivers to our full expectations, in time and delivers value for the money invested in. I congratulate the contractor and also remind him of his obligations,” Nabakooba said.
The USMID program is premised on the need to uplift Municipalities through improved urban infrastructure and institutional strengthening of the staff capacities, and retooling their offices to enable them take on their work well. It is competitive and each participating Local Government works hard to qualify for resources of the subsequent years.
Nabakooba shared that the USMID Program is a Program for Results (PforR) meaning that the level of funding available to a Local government depends on how a local government performs compared to the others.
She revealed that in the last performance assessment carried out to inform funds allocation to Program Local Governments for FY 2021/22, Kamuli Municipality performed well by meeting the minimum conditions and scoring highly which led to allocation of UgX12.5Billion.
“I congratulate you upon this achievement. My prayer is that you maintain this high score for the fourth and final performance assessment which is already ongoing. I want to believe that our Independent Verification Agent has already passed here, and if he has not, then it is a wakeup call that you prepare adequately and show your results, so that you qualify for more resources,” she said.
The first phase of USMID, which was five years ago, was successfully implemented and concluded in 2019.
The current phase that is being implemented is the follow-on phase, also called the Additional Financing (AF) that came because of the Lands Ministry’s good performance and also the original 14 Municipalities that did a great job, to the extent that some of them have since been upgraded into Cities.
The minister tasked Kamuli leaders to ensure they have a clean Municipality that will make it shine.
“I know the challenges of Municipal solid waste, especially with high populations like what we have here. You have a population of 60,000 people in your Municipality, and our project has found out that the waste generated daily is estimated to be 43.229 tons/day and it is expected to increase to 20,546 tons a day by the year 2025.”
She added: “This waste comprises a higher proportion of organics, mainly food residues from markets and from food preparation from restaurants, hotels, institutions, and households, and it is not collected at all. This is a recipe for disaster in terms of causing disease to our people and having a dirty Municipality that will not benefit from the facelift regardless of the beautiful roads USMID shall support. Let us wake up and clean up.”
Nabakooba told the Kamuli Municipality leadership and the private sector that the USMID program has an elevated standard of transparency, accountability and participation of all citizens. She made them aware of the complaints handling desk at the construction sites, and in the Municipal Council to receive, register and resolve complaints about the ongoing work flaws, challenges and any other areas of concern from any individual or group of people.
“Community participation in Municipal Council development and under the USMID program has been catalysed through the establishment of the Municipal Development Forums (MDF). All stakeholders are represented and their roles are well understood for the development of their Municipality. MDFs are the bridge between the Local government leadership, and the general communities. Please take advantage of the MDFs to foster sustainable urban development.”
Also present at the function were Members of Parliament, Kamuli RDC, Chairman LCV, Kamuli Municipality Mayor, Town Clerk and staff of Central & Local Government.