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How the Parliament of Uganda made dodgy mistakes to legislate  Mobile Money tax rates:

A mobile money transaction. The 1 per cent tax

A mobile money transaction. The 1 per cent tax on mobile money caused an uproar among Ugandans. PHOTO BY ABUBAKER LUBOWA 

By Frankllin Draku

UGANDA, Kampala. A fresh controversy has emerged over how the rate of a proposed excise duty on Mobile Money transactions was secretly doubled in law to 1 per cent, sparking a nationwide chaos and slowing businesses.
The impugned rate, which President Museveni on Wednesday said should have been 0.5 per cent, has raised questions about the internal workings of government and concentration of officials and legislators to scrutinise official documents and draft legislation requiring attention to detail.
Members of Parliament passed the Excise Duty (Amendment) Bill, 2018, by voice voting on May 30, introducing, among other taxes, multiple 1 per cent excise duty on Mobile Money transactions --- deposit, transfer, withdrawal and payment --- and Shs200 per-day social media tax.
“This is to clarify that there is no tax on mere depositing money on a mobile phone account. That confusion should be clarified. The half -per cent tax, not 1 per cent, is only on the sender and the receiver of money through Mobile Money,” President Museveni noted in a statement on Wednesday.
Days after Parliament enacted the Excise Duty (Amendment) Bill, 2018, Finance minister Matia Kasaija disclosed publicly that Cabinet had agreed on 0.5 per cent as the rate and that one of his colleagues, whom he did not name, took advantage of his travel abroad to alter the figure.
The State Minister of Finance for Planning, Mr David Bahati, was an understudy at the time Mr Kasaija travelled to South Korea, and he presented the Bill for the First Reading on April 3, 2018 and later defended it when MPs debated and enacted the law on May 30.
We were unable to reach Mr Bahati, whose mobile phones were switched off and who was out of office when this newspaper visted yesterday, for an explanation on how and at what stage the figures changed.
“I am not aware that Parliament has approved 1 per cent tax on Mobile Money. I apologise for that because it contradicts what we agreed on in Cabinet. What we agreed on was a half of one per cent. I will ask the responsible officer how 1 per cent tax on Mobile Money was approved,” Mr Kasaija said early last month.
He promised to take up the matter up with the President, who by law is technically the Minister of Finance, but no adjustment was made until implementation of the tax triggered a backlash that has beaten the government to retreat.
Mr Jacob Oulanyah, the deputy Speaker of Parliament, who chaired the May 30 session, told this newspaper yesterday that they only processed figures as submitted by the Finance ministry.
“Check the original Bills to see where the problem came from; it will give you a clear picture of where the figures came from,” he said.
The ministry’s Permanent Secretary, Mr Keith Muhakanizi, did not answer our repeated telephone calls, but one source familiar with the internal discussions said a “head may roll” over the politically-costly error that has also embarrassed government.
According to the Hansard, Parliament’s Finance committee vice chairperson Loy Katali reported to the whole House that “the Bill proposes to impose Excise Duty of one per cent on the value of mobile money transactions of receiving, payments and withdraws”.
Use of Mobile Money is an efficiency gain and should be taxed, Ms Katali argued, adding that money has migrated from the traditional payment systems like banks to the digital platforms.
“It is, therefore, important that taxes be levied on such platforms. Using mobile money is a choice as there are other methods of payment which are already attracting taxes,” she said.
Twenty-eight out of 38 MPs who spoke on the tax proposal opposed it, but it passed when the consolidated Excise Duty (Amendment) Bill, 2018, which contained other tax provisions and exemptions, was put to voice voting.
Mr Ignatius Wamakuyu, the vice chairperson of House Budget committee, said Finance must take responsibility for the wrong figures.
“The original draft Bill brought to us indicated one per cent tax on mobile money. At Parliament, we had discussions on its affordability and we thought it should be brought down to 0.5 per cent. However, on the day of passing the Bill, when the (deputy) Speaker posed a question on whether it should remain one per cent, or be reduced, no one rose to challenge the one per cent and that’s how we passed it.”

 

 

 

 

 

In Uganda, UMEME the energy distribution company, has opened a new Pallisa service centre so that it can work better with the communities in the Eastern Provinces:

The modern international race for cheap, environmentally friendly energy generation and distribution:

1st June, 2018

Written by Jonathan Kamoga

In a bid to improve its customer experience in Eastern Uganda, UMEME the country's electricity provider has today opened a new service centre in Pallisa town.
 
“Our service strategy has always been focused on process simplification, automation and investments to improve network performance,” Selestino Babungi, the Umeme managing director, said.
 
The new Umeme service centre in Pallisa
He added that new service centres will be opened in Kapchorwa, Sironko, Bubulo and Kumi as part of the company’s grand plan to bring services closer to the customers. The eastern part of Uganda has over time been facing power thefts with many making illegal connections that have caused some deaths.
 
The Mbale Umeme office, the only one in the region has previously served 15 districts, including Mbale Municipality, Pallisa, Budaka, Bulambuli, Bukedea, Kumi, Kapchorwa, Bubulo, Manafwaa and Sironko among others.
 
“We have 37 service centres across the country, but some of them stretch over a radius of up to 80km, which makes it difficult for our customers to access some of the services. The opening up of several satellite offices will bridge this gap,” Babungi said.
 
In 2017, Umeme rolled out customer outreach programmes in rural areas with the aim of bringing services closer to customers including education on dangers of power theft and vandalism, safe use of power, energy efficiency tips and e-payment options.
 
Mobile service desks were set up in high growth areas and potential customers engaged to connect electricity to their homes. Before these initiatives, illegal connections in the sub-region cost Umeme an estimate of Shs 20 billion annually.
 
In a move to avert the situation, the company launched operations against illegal power users in the area at the start of last year.
 
Paul Ssempira, the Umeme Mbale district manager, notes that there has been a 30 per cent increase in the number of new connections to 8,431 in 2017 from 3,541 in 2016.
 
The region also contributed up to 10 per cent of the 19 per cent losses that the company registered at the end of 2016. However, partly due to the interventions, the company recorded lower energy loss of 17.2 per cent in 2017.
 
“The region alone registered up to 60 per cent energy losses in 2016, but this dropped to 45 per cent in 2017. The 60 per cent of the losses are categorized into 45 per cent commercial losses (power theft) and 15 per cent technical losses,” Ssempira adds.
 
The company’s losses in the region also dropped to Shs 15 billion in 2017 from Shs 20 billion after the utility intensified its operations against illegal users and vandals.

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To improve net work performance for this Hydro-electricity company such service stations should be working alongside Solar powered electricity companies.
UMEME does not want to see any other energy competitors come on the market. If all these illegal users and vandals in other words (customers) are encouraged to put up solar panels in the hope of selling part of their solar output to UMEME such losses would be history in terms of modern environmentally friendly technology. Customer is always right.

 

 

 

 

 

A Uganda government Communication regulator has shut down 23 digital FM Radio Stations for ‘promoting witchcraft’ on the African continent:

 

A radio studio.

A radio studio. Ugandan regulator UCC shuts down 23 radios for ‘promoting witchcraft’. FILE PHOTO | AFP 

By The EastAfrican

Uganda’s communications regulator, UCC, has ordered nearly two dozen radio stations to be taken off the air over what it calls “lack of minimum broadcasting standards.”

The directive to shut down 23 stations has sent shockwaves in the broadcast industry.

Pamela Ankunda, a spokesperson for the UCC, told The EastAfrican that the decision was taken after the stations ignored incessant warnings against advertising and promoting witchcraft.

The commission makes reference the public notice of 27th March 2014…where all broadcasters were warned against advertising and promoting witchcraft.

The commission has noted with concern that despite these several warnings your undertaking not to advertise and promote witchcraft…and the public outcry against such misuse of the airwaves, your station has continued to advertise and promote witchcraft in contravention of section 2 of the witchcraft act,” states a letter from the commission.

The regulator also accused the stations of aiding and abetting fraud by allowing fraudsters to use their airwaves to con people through promotion of healing powers.

 

Ms Ankunda said the stations will resume broadcasts if they comply with the broadcasting standards.

Uganda has a vibrant FM radio segment, with more than 270 radio stations on air. The stiff competition for a limited advertising pool has left many broadcasters with little option but to accept advertising from whoever can walk into the studio with some money.

Some of these advertisers are herbalists and sellers of lucky charms, the practice the regulator has interpreted as promotion of witchcraft and fraud.

 

 

 

 

 

Vodafone in Uganda files for bankruptcy because there is not enough modern Information Technology coming out from this African country:

Actually Uganda in East Africa was the leading country in IT during the 1960s:

February 22, 2018

Written by URN

Telecom operator Vodafone has collapsed and consequently applied for bankruptcy protection.

In a notice of issue of an interim protection order, the Civil Division of the High court has appointed Donald Nyakairu as Vodafone's provisional administrator.

 

The African Vodafone IT staff that are likely to loose their jobs that are very crucial to the country's modern development.

Related Stories

The notice reads thus: "Take notice that on the 15th of February 2018, the High court of Uganda (Civil Division) issued an order confirming the application of Mr. Donald Nyakairu as the provisional administrator of Afrimax Uganda Limited, and an interim protective order was granted to the company for a period of three (3) months pursuant to Section 139 of the Insolvency Act, 2011".
 
Afrimax is the holding company of the Vodafone brand in Uganda. A protective order is a request to a court to issue a legally enforceable document preventing a person or entity from taking a specified action.

Protective orders are often used in bankruptcy to bar unsecured claims by creditors or the release of confidential or potentially harmful information. In the Vodafone case, for instance, a protective order may bar any collection activities by creditors against the debtor.

Vodafone posted a statement on their website today saying the provisional administrator manager is to help the company improve commercial and operational efficiency.
 
"Dear customers, this is to inform you that the directors of Afrimax Uganda Limited T/A Vodafone Uganda recently appointed a provisional administrator manager, Mr. Donald Nyakairu, who has been charged with restructuring and reorganizing the company in a bid to improve commercial and operational efficiencies."
 
In the interim transition period, the statement says, customers will experience a temporary deterioration in the quality of network services as the administrator implements the required changes and negotiates with suppliers.
 
"We apologise in advance for any disturbances and inconveniences caused and reassure all customers that any unused data will be reimbursed once our network is fully restored," the statement reads further.

In another statement, also posted on the website today, February 22, the telecom company describes Donald Nyakairu, the newly appointed provisional administrator, as "a highly experienced corporate commercial lawyer with particular expertise in the information technology and telecommunications sector, with over 29 years' experience, has been appointed provisional administrator of Vodafone Uganda."
  
For a while now it had been known that Vodafone was in turbulent water, owing to a small subscription base and high cost of doing business.

Vodafone customers have been experiencing regular service downtimes since last year after the company was reportedly taken off masts after failing to pay rent fees. 
 
The company that had positioned itself as the leader in internet and data services found stiff competition from established players like Africell, Airtel and market leader MTN.
 
In addition to having a nationwide coverage unlike Vodafone which operated in Greater Kampala, the three competitors have embarked on a cut-throat competition leading to lowering of prices, especially for data.
 
Recently, government came to the rescue of Uganda Telecom, cutting its massive debt and ordering government ministries, departments and agencies to subscribe to its services, further narrowing the market for Vodafone.
 
The collapse of Vodafone points to the ruggedness of the Ugandan market which is increasingly becoming a graveyard for many a telecom operator. The company also recently reportedly suffered from internal fraud when its system was hacked into and over Shs 700m worth of airtime serial codes stolen. 
 
Vodafone's crash comes hard on the quiet bow-out of Smart, a telcom owned by the powerful and wealthy Aga Khan Foundation.
 
Another telcom, K2 Telecom, linked to Buganda Kingdom is also struggling to penetrate the market dominated by MTN, Airtel and Africell.
 
Telcoms that have either collapsed or sold out include Celtel, Zain and Warid.

 

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This is an international company that can do better if it can amalgamate with Uganda Telecommunication Ltd to try and up grade Information Technology on the African Continent in a big way. The poor people of Africa badly need the IT services as well as the so called government made bourgeoisie in these difficult economic times. China now  has its own lookalike Google(Alibaba) with a very big market on the Asian continent. This technlogical insight was the future for Uganda Telecommunication Ltd in real IT software systems when the EA community was first established during the 1960s. When the British colonialists established these institutions, they had no idea what they were putting up. The African counterparts are indeed now struggling while most modern countries are determined to stay put in IT systems whatever the cost.

One NRM diehard reckons M7 is the one who created and brought IT to the country of Uganda.

 

 

 

 

 

President Museveni of Uganda was ready for a civil war if the age limit was not removed from the Nation's Constitution by the National Parliament he controls:

The world over in fireworks, celebrating the new year 2018 in great technological output.

The Military President of Uganda feeling happy with himself, as he addreses the Nation.

1st January, 2018

By The President of Uganda's 2018 New Year Message.

President Yoweri Museveni has hailed parliament for passing the controversial age limit bill last year, saying in doing so, they cleverly averted the country from descending into a repeat of past "complicated paths".

Although he did not mention these "complicated paths", Museveni in his New Year's address forced upon broadcasters on Sunday seemed to indicate that, had parliament not passed the age limit bill, those complicated paths "would have been required" as "the destiny of Africa can't be under-cooked or be badly cooked."

Uganda has never had a peaceful transfer of power since independence in 1962, with presidents literary having to bomb their way into power. Without the constitutional amendment, Museveni would have been ineligible to contest for presidency in 2021 after the expiry of his current term.

"I want to salute the 317 MPs who defied intimidation, malignment and blackmail and opted for a flexible Constitution to deal with the destiny issues of Africa instead of maintaining Uganda on the path of unimaginative, non-ideological, neo-colonial status quo. By so doing, they enabled us to avoid the more complicated paths that would have been required.  We cannot kukonesa (under-cook or badly cook) the destiny of Africa." he said. 

A total of 317 MPs last month passed the age limit bill which lifted the upper 75-year age cap and also lowered the 35-year lower cap to 18 years for those contesting for presidency. 97 MPs voted against the bill while two abstained. 

The MPs, mainly ruling party MPs, voted to remove the upper age limit and also extended their term of office by an extra two years claiming the five years are not enough for service delivery in their constituencies. 

“The 317 MPs have played a crucial role at this historical junction (masanganzira) just like the 28 cadres of Montepuez, Mozambique played in the formation of the Fronasa army, the 43 fighters with 27 rifles played when they attacked Kabamba and the 232 MPs of the 7th parliament played in opening up the term limits that have enabled Uganda to cover more ground," Museveni added. 

Museveni also hit back at his critics who accuse him of being greedy for power and selfish by hanging unto the presidency of the country.

Now into his fifth term of office, the recent constitutional amendment to lift the age limits was seen by many analysts as Museveni's latest move to circumvent the only remaining legal barrier to what some call his ‘life-presidency’.

Museveni said he is not greedy for the presidency as some suggest because he gets no material benefits for being president of Uganda. He said his, is more of greed for sacrifice rather than greed for power.

“I heard some people talking of “greedy” politicians. Greedy for what?  What material benefit do I get from being involved in government?  In the last 52 years, I have either been working for no pay or for little pay. May be those people talking mean “greedy” for sacrifice,” he said.

On the perceived ‘life-presidency’ project, Museveni said those accusing him of harbouring such a scheme, are either uninformed or enemies of progress for Uganda and Africa.

“Those liars who talk about “life-presidency” of Museveni should be exposed for what they say. They are either un-informed individuals talking about things they do not know or evil schemers who do not want Uganda and Africa to succeed.

When Mwalimu [Julius Nyerere] was advocating for the East African federation, some would malign him saying that he was ambitious and he wanted to dominate East Africa. Mwalimu is now long dead.  What would have happened if the other leaders had gone along with his vision? Whom would have East Africa benefited? Obviously, we who are here and the future generations,” said Museveni.

 

THE BETRAYING CLERGY AND THE MEDIA

 

As expected, Museveni did not spare the media and clergy, whom, he accused of working with the groups they 'fancy' to make them get political power instead of working for the independence of Africa.

“The real democracy we fought for provides that:  “all power belongs to the people”, they are the ones to decide their destiny through universal suffrage at regular intervals or through their elected representatives.  Some of the elements, however, mainly working with foreigners, try to impose pseudo-democracy where the power of the people is constrained by term limits, age-limits, even educational qualifications,” Museveni said.

Museveni accused the clergy of playing the ‘know-it-all’ role, speaking authoritatively almost on everything. The clergy have been critical of parliament for passing the age limit bill. Even in their Christmas prayers and messages, many of them accused the MPs who passed the bill of being greedy and short-sighted. They asked Museveni not to assent to the bill.

“Some of our religious people are so full of arrogance. They talk most authoritatively on all and everything even when they have not bothered to find out the truth. This is assuming they do not have evil intentions which would be worse.  That would make them into the Kayaffas, the Chief Priest, that betrayed Jesus.

This is in the Book of Matthew Chapter 26:57–75. It says: “And those who had laid hold of Jesus led him away to Caiphas the High Priest where the Scribes and elders were assembled. Now the Chief Priests, the elders and the Council sought false testimony against Jesus to put him to death” he said.

Museveni accused the media of being the “devil” that is holding back the continent by harbouring non-African interests. He particularly accused New Vision CEO Robert Kabushenga of using the state media to specialise in writing trivialities.

"The Monitor [news] paper is always working for non-African interests. Nevertheless, recently, Mr. Kabushenga was persuaded to publish, in his Christmas paper, the Uganda Argus of the 6th of June, 1963. I will never forget that issue of the 6th of June, 1963.  I was in S3 at Ntare but already very much involved in politics. I had never been so happy nor have I been so happy since as I was happy on that day and for some months afterwards", he said.

"The headlines on the front page of the paper, with the pictures of Mzee Kenyatta, Mwalimu Nyerere and Mzee Obote, shouted: “Federation This Year”, “Top-level talks end in Nairobi”.

Ugandans this is the Photostat copy of that happy newspaper issue. Has any of our media houses that are supposed to “inform”, “educate”, “entertain”, ever mentioned this to you?  After a few months the devil that is always the enemy of Africa had killed this effort.

"Had this effort succeeded, East Africa would possibly today be where India is. Certainly, there would have been no Idi Amin, the genocide in Rwanda would never have been allowed to take place, the endemic problems of Burundi would have been contained, the problem of South Sudan would have been easier to solve and even the problem of Somalia would have been solved."

 

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It is all about wishful political living. What has the liberation of Mozambique, a former Portuguse colony got to do with an African civil war in Uganda, an independent and Ancient country, that had previously made a temporary international agreement with Britain for military protection?

 

Wishful thinking indeed that if one had all the world in one's grasp, what favour would one like to do for God?
That is why everybody loves to build beautiful castles in the air!

 

 

 

 

In Buganda and Uganda, Umeme calls for more domestic unit discount as forest resource for fuel continue to disappear in the countryside:

Mr Sam Zimbe, the deputy Managing Director of UMEME in Uganda, has said that about 17% of the power that the company gets is lost through theft and the company’s focus is to reduce that level.

Loading. A Yaka subscriber loads prepaid power

Loading. A Yaka subscriber loads prepaid power units to the metre. FILE PHOTO 

10 December, 2017
By Nelson Wesonga

KAMPALA. Electricity distributor Umeme has suggested that the government increases the number of discounted units of electricity for households from 15 to 50.

Umeme said this will enable many rural households to start businesses that need 50 units in a month.

Currently, home owners pay Shs150 for each of the first 15 units they consume and Shs685.6 for each unit above the 15.

Mr Sam Zimbe, Umeme’s deputy managing director, said about 100,000 of Umeme’s one million customers would benefit if the lifeline band is increased to 50 units.

“…consider extending that coverage to, say, 50 units, that will cover a wider population,” Mr Zimbe said yesterday in Kampala.

He said this would enable many a household to use electricity to power a refrigerator to preserve some perishable goods for sale.

Mr Zimbe said this during a public hearing, organised by the Electricity Regulatory Authority (ERA), on power utilities’ 2018 tariff review applications.

During the hearing, the Uganda Electricity Generation Company Ltd, Eskom Uganda Ltd, Uganda Electricity Transmission Company Ltd, Uganda Electricity Distribution Company Ltd (UEDCL) and Umeme presented their budgets for 2018.

According to a July 2012 paper by Maria Vagliasindi for the World Bank, for countries with high connection rates, lifeline tariffs offer the advantage of much higher coverage of the poor than other existing targeted programmes.

The report said where access is an issue; lifeline electricity tariffs have been regressive.

The UEDCL’s chief technical services officer, Mr Franklin Kizito Oidu, said those who are capable of paying the full cost of each unit should be excluded from the lifeline units/tariff.

“From our interaction with people out there, they were saying that even those who are capable [of paying the full charge] are benefitting from [the lifeline tariff],” Mr Kizito said.

“The proposal was that those who are capable should not benefit from it at all. So a mechanism should be put in place to…only the designated poor people should benefit from it.”

In its tariff review application for 2018, Umeme proposed an increment of the lifeline tariff from Shs150 per unit to Shs200.

It argued that the 150 has been applying since 2014, thus, given, among other factors, inflation, it is time for review.

ERA board would, within the next 21 days, have decided on the power utilities’ applications for tariff review and set the base tariff for 2018 and the retail tariff for the first quarter of 2018.
nwesonga@ug.nationmedia.com

 

 

17% of generated electricity is lost in theft:

 

During the sidelines of the public hearing meeting organised by the Electricity Regulatory Authority (ERA), Zimbe explained that this year, court has addressed over 20 cases related to power fraud.

Sam Zimbe speaking during the meeting

Sam Zimbe, the deputy Managing Director UMEME has said about 17% of the power that the company gets is lost through theft and the company’s focus is to reduce that level.

“One percent reduction in losses equate to about $3m so the impact is huge to the economy, to consumer. We believe that we can reduce those loses but we have to work with public; legislative framework must be proper. The Judiciary has done its work to have a special court for those caught stealing power,” he stated.

During the sidelines of the public hearing meeting organised by the Electricity Regulatory Authority (ERA), Zimbe explained that this year, court has addressed over 20 cases related to power fraud.

“Over a year ago, we were experiencing a lot of power theft in Bugisu area, Mbale. 60% of the power that was dispatched in that area was lost to power theft but I am glad to tell you that with alliance with local leaders, we have reduced those loses up to about 35%,”he noted.

George Rwabajungu, the manager corporate services at the Uganda Electricity Transmission Company Limited highlighted on some of the challenges facing the company in power transmission such as vandalism of lines especially in Mabira Forest, court injunctions and delay in remittance of funds by the Government.
 
He also highlighted on some of the company’s achievement in 2017 such as the commissioning of the Queens Way substation, Fort portal substation and maintenance of transmission grid availability by 98%.

 

 

 


 

 

Bamukutte lubona ng'abba amasannyalaze ku kikondo

By Moses Lemisa

 

Added 27th November 2017

 

OBUBBI bw’amasannyalaze obweyongedde mu Kawempe, abatuuze babutadde ku bakamyufu abakolagana n’abakozi ba Umeme.

 

Bukenyangalimumuttigwamasanyalaze5 703x422

Bukenya ng’ali ku muti gw’amasannyalaze kwe baamukwatidde. EKIF: MOSES LEMISA

 

Ebizimbe bingi mu kawempe bikozesa masannyalaze agatali mu makubo matuufu. Bano kuliko eb’ebibanda bya firimu, ebyuma by’obuwunga, ebbaala n’ennyumba z’abapangisa.

Abatuuze mu miruka; Makerere i-iii, Mulago i-iii, Bwaise I, Wandegeya, Kyebando ne Kanyanya omusango bagutadde ku bakozi ba Umeme be balumirizza nti balina bakamyufu ababasoloolezza ssente ne bazibawa ku buli nkomerero ya mwezi. Obubbi bw’amasannyalaze mu Kawempe abamu baagufuula mulimu.

Amasannyalaze bagayisa mu ttaka, mu kaabuyonjo, mu myala era gasse abantu abawera.

Wabula omu ku bakozi ba Umeme eyatidde okwatuukiriza amannya ge, yategeezezza nti ssinga Palamenti teyisa tteeka ku babba amasannyalaze, tewali kijja kukyukako.

Yagasseeko nti wadde mu UMEME mulimu abakozi abakolagana ne bakamyufu, waliwo ababba amasannyalaze ne batwalibwa ku poliisi n’ebayimbula olw’okubulwa etteeka mw’ebasibira.

Yagambye nti okunoonyereza kulaga nti mu Munisipaali ezikola Kampala, Kawempe ekwata kisooka mu kubba amasannyalaze ng’eddirirwa Nakawa, Makindye ne Lubaga.

BAMUKWATIDDE KU MUTI

Abaserikale ku poliisi y’oku Kaleerwe baakutte Everisto Bukenya 37, ow’e Katooke A ng’ono yasangiddwa waggulu ku muti ng’alina amayumba g’azzaako mu bukyamu.

Bukenya yagambye nti mukozi wa kkampuni ya Aso esangibwa e Kiwaatule era bakolagana n’aba Umeme.

Abatuuze baawadde obujulizi ku Bukenya nti alina bakamyufu b’akolagana nabo okubba amasannyalaze.

Bukenya ekyasinze okumuloopa, yasangiddwa ku muti nga talina kikoofiira, ttaawo wadde giravuzi ebikozesebwa abakozi ba Umeme.

Jane Nakandi ow’omu Kirokole yategeezezza nti mu Kawempe bannannyini mayumba beggyako obuvunaanyizibwa bw’amasannyalaze ng’omupangisa y’alina okwesalira amagezi.

Yagasseeko nti ebikwekweto bya Umeme ku babba amasannyalaze tebikyalina makulu kuba bennyini abagasalako ate babalaba nga bagazzaako.

 

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Government yetalina busobozi ku technologia aliwo ebiro bino. Erina endowooza nti bwenaleeta ba investors bamasanyalaze ate era bebajja okwota amasanyalaze. Kigamba nti amasanyalaze ga ba investors okukozesa nokwota.
Ekirala buli nyumba bwesasula amasanyalaze (hydro-electricity) ga mitwalo 6 buli mwezi nga erina namasanyalaze ga solar waggulu kukasolya, esobola okuguza UMEME amasanyalaze ga solar ga mitwalo 5 buli mwezi. Kino ekibalo ku bills zawaka mu Uganda kyangu nyo okubalamu.

 

 

 

 

 

In Kampala city, the Street solar lights are vandalised as they are installed:

 

Destroyed. Some of the vandalised street lights

Destroyed. Some of the vandalised street lights on Kampala Road.Many street lights have been stolen hardly a year after their installation. FILE PHOTO 

28 October, 2017
By AMOS NGWOMOYA

 

KAMPALA. UGANDA.

Unknown people have started vandalising street solar lights in Kampala City barely a year after their installation.
Daily Monitor visited Mukwano Road and found out that the solar lights have been vandalised, leaving Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) counting losses. 
The vandalised solar lights have left the road in the dark again.
Reliable sources told this newspaper that thugs steal bulbs and sell them cheaply downtown, Kampala.
Ms Juliet Bukirwa Muwanguzi, the KCCA acting public and corporate affairs manager, confirmed the development. 
She said the contractor, Zhenjiang Holley International, should take responsibility.
“It is true the newly installed solar lights such as those on Mukwano Road are being vandalised by unknown people. However, the project hasn’t been handed over to us because the installation in the city is still ongoing and this means that the contracted company will still foot the bills to replace the stolen lights,” Ms Bukirwa said.
She said KCCA plans to light up the entire city using solar lights because they are more durable and sustainable compared to LED bulbs that are deemed expensive.
The contract to install city street solar lights was awarded to Zhenjiang Holley International, a Chinese company, after the cancellation of Phillips East Africa Ltd’s contract in June last year over performance.
The Shs7b project will see at least 906 street solar lights installed in the Central Business District (CBD) and the other four divisions of the city: Makindye, Rubaga, Nakawa and Kawempe. 
She said the solar poles will also be fitted with CCTV cameras to mitigate crime in the city.
Daily Monitor understands that KCCA is currently racing against time to complete the stalled installation of street solar lights whose funding from government was released in 2015 ahead of the Pope’s visit to Uganda. 
The vandalised solar lights pose a threat to the security of city residents and motorists, especially at night.
An official from Zhenjiang Holley International, who declined to be named because he isn’t authorised to speak to the press, said although they anticipated to handover the project to KCCA in the next two years, the project could stall if more vandals continue.

Extra cost
He is also worried that the vandalised solar lights could cost them extra money, which isn’t in their budget.
“We want to do a decent job and KCCA contracted us because of our quality services. However, the vandalised solar lights threaten the progress of the whole exercise yet we really want to deliver on time. However, we have beefed up security in the hot spots to curb down such vandals,” he said.
The installation is being done in line with the newly constructed city roads under the Kampala Infrastructural Institutional Project (KIIDP-2), a five-year project funded by the World Bank.
Dr Steven Jeremy Ntambi, the KCCA operations manager in the directorate of engineering and technical services, told Daily Monitor recently that the installed solar lights have a capacity to light a distance of 30 metres.
“We are currently at the installation stage and after that, we shall go to the testing stage and finish up with the commissioning stage. Although some are already lit, we haven’t officially commissioned them,” he said.
He noted that when charged, the new street solar panels have the capacity to provide light for three days. 
However, he said one of their challenges is the developers, who build in road reserves where the solar lights are supposed to be installed.

Installed lights
While inspecting the ongoing works of the project recently, KCCA executive director, Ms Jennifer Musisi, expressed shock that some landlords have illegally used up the spaces meant for the installation of the street solar lights. 
“I would like to caution city landlords against creating parking spaces on pavements because it’s where we install poles for solar lights, and also used by pedestrians. We shall not hesitate to prosecute any landlord, who blocks this exercises because we want to have it completed,” Ms Musisi said.
Some of the roads with installed street solar lights include: Bombo, Kyagwe, Kampala, Speak, the Constitution Square, Nakasero, Lumumba Avenue, Kintu and parts of Makerere Hill.

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