Legislators have raised concern over the absence of road equipment for road maintenance across the country.
According to Hon. Micheal Bukenya (NRM, Bukuya County), the 14 new districts that were created over three years ago have failed to acquire road maintenance equipment, which has left the road infrastructure in dire straits.
The districts include Kassanda, Rwampara, Bugweri, Nabilatuk, Kikuube, Kwania, Karenga, Kapelebyong, Kazo, Kitagwenda, Kalaki, Terego, Obongi and Madi Okollo.
“These districts are suffering and this has affected service delivery to residents and also affected the effective utilisation of the road fund to the districts,” Bukenya said.
He raised the concern while presenting a matter of national importance on the Floor of Parliament in a sitting chaired by Speaker Rebecca Kadaga on Wednesday, 17 March 2021.
Bukenya told the House that while processing the Shs 45 trillion budget for the 2020/2021 financial year presented by government, they appropriated Shs 47 billion for the procurement of road equipment for the 14 districts.
He added that the Ministry of Works and Transport signed contracts to see the procurement of the equipment through, but the finance ministry has not released the money.
“My prayer, Madam Speaker, is that the Supplementary Budget being brought by the Finance Ministry should capture the Shs 47 billion so that these districts can get the necessary equipment to work on the roads,” said Bukenya.
Nakaseke South County MP Hon. Paulson Luttamaguzi supplemented Bukenya’s concerns saying that some districts like Nakaseke which had received the equipment continued to have poor roads.
“What is the purpose of the road equipment bought by government when the roads are in a sorry state? Government should find ways of monitoring districts on whether the road equipment that was purchased, is being used,” Luttamaguzi said.
Kadaga told the House that it was government’s plans that all districts must have equipment for road maintenance, adding that, “Failure for some of these districts to have this equipment indicates negation of service delivery.”
State Minister for Finance, Hon. David Bahati, said the Ministry of Works and Transport had not raised any complaints about failure to receive money to purchase the road equipment, and cited possible challenges in the procurement process.
The minister committed to provide feedback to the House on Thursday, 18 March 2021.