KAMPALA – The Vice-President, Jessica Alupo, has said that for a country to develop, proper physical planning needs to be prioritised.
Alupo said there is need of guiding the people on proper land use (developments) and human settlements which services are provided for under the programme. These, she added, are very key when it comes to job creation and industrialisation.
“We can not talk of industrialisation and job creation in this country if there is no supporting infrastructure in urban areas such as electricity, roads, railways and other service delivery infrastructure that help lower costs of doing business,” she said.
Alupo made the remarks during the opening of the Joint Review Meeting for the Sustainable Urbanization and Housing Programme at Speke Resort Munyonyo on November 2nd.
The Minister for Lands, Housing and Urban Development, Judith Nabakooba, revealed that Government of Uganda developed the first ever National Pyhsical Development Plan which is aimed at improving physical planning across the country.
“I would like to inform this meeting that the Government developed the first ever National Physical Development plan, which is aimed at improving physical planning,” she said.
In addition, Nabakooba also said Government introduced the Parish Development Model which is geared towards improving household incomes, and sustainable social-economic transformation which in the long run would help improve urban conditions.
Mabala Samuel, a housing and urban development specialist, noted that Uganda needs to urbanise and industrialse as much as it can. This, according to him, would spur economic productivity, thus bringing about rapid economic growth and development.
“Urbanisation is a key driver of economic development. We should be attracting more people from rural areas. More people in urban areas would lead to urbanisation which would spur economic productivity,” he said, adding that, “rural areas undermine economic productivity since there is low productivity. Cities across the world contributed the biggest share of their national GDPs.”
Both urbanisation and industrialisation, according to Mabala, “need to move hand in hand because it would be dangerous to urbanisation with out jobs.”
For Uganda to develop, Mabala said urbanisation needs to be at the center of national development. He also said the land market in the country needs to be regulated arguing that since land is considered as an investment to many, it has drove its cost up, which has also in the long run led to increased costs of doing business.
The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Lands, Housing, and Urban development, Dorcus Okalanyi, said the sustainable urbanisation and housing programme is one of the 20 programmes of NDP III.
The programme, she said, is central to the realisation of NDP III’s objective which is; to consolidate and increase stock and quality of productive infrastructure through leveraging urbanisation and housing.