Thursday, 26 May 2016

Corruption in Uganda's road sector takes us several steps backwards

A report by a Commission of Inquiry into mismanagement of Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA) reveals that, before the new management, UNRA had received Shs9 trillion and with this they delivered 1500km of tarmac roads. The report argues that with Shs9 trillion UNRA should have constructed 5,147km. 

UNRA was formed in 2006 to construct, maintain national roads. These mainly include highways in Uganda and they constitute over 20,000km of roads. Of these roads Uganda has only 4,500km paved/tarmac. Road construction in Uganda mainly done by big foreign companies; therefore there is big money involved. In the recent past, the share of the road subsector in the national budget has tremendously increased. This has attracted the attention of the corrupt officials who want to feast on tax payers money.

President Museveni receives a report of a probe into UNRA (New Vision photo)

In the same report it is stated that it is comparatively more expensive to construct 1km of road in Uganda than it is in Rwanda or Ethiopia. The report goes on to say Shs4 trillion was "misused" read stolen by 90 officials in collusion with some staff at UNRA.

So, in 10 years of UNRA's existence, corruption has forced the taxpayers to miss thousands of kilometres of road because some individuals were dishonest! 
According to the report, Shs4 trillion would have made UNRA construct additional 3,647km of paved roads in the country. 

Hello! This is just corruption at "old" UNRA. There are allegations of corruption in other government agencies and departments. All this implies that the cancer of corruption is taking Uganda several steps backwards in terms of development. This must stop.

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