Members on the physical infrastructure committee of Parliament have put Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA) officials to task to explain the reason for their increased budget yet on several occasions they have failed to fully use the money allocated to them.
This was during a stakeholder’s engagement called with the aim of highlighting the different projects UNRA shall handle in the coming financial year.
In the coming financial 2019/2020 UNRA requested for 5.3 trillion shillings to help them facilitate the many projects they have on their plate up from the 4.7 trillion shilling that was given to them in this running financial year.
UNRA internal audit director Engineer Moses Kasakya notes that among the upcoming projects is Kampala Flyover Project, Kampala Jinja Expressway PPP – under procurement, Mpigi Expressway PPP – under procurement and Kira – Kasangati – Matuga – Buloba 32km and Najjanankumbi – Busabala – Kazi 11kms – under procurement.
Upgrading projects include expansion of the Kampala Northern bypass, rehabilitation of Nansana-Busunju – of which 96% of it is done, upgrading of Mukono – Kyetume – Katosi/Kisoga – Nyenga (74km) 96% is done.
Nyenga – Njeru (10kms) 15% is done, Bweyogere – Bukasa road which has been Contract signed Lweza – Kigo Low volume seal project. 50% done
Kitala – Gelenge road Construction Unit 20% done
However the chairperson of the physical infrastructural committee of parliament Eng. Kafeero Ssekitoleko challenged the roads body to explain why they would ask for more money yet they have failed to utilise what they have received in previous years.
Engineer Ssekitoleko pointed out that in the financial year 2017/2018 UNRA was allocated shs4 trillion only use 2.8 trillion which was also misused and other 3 trillion was returned to the consolidated fund.
The committee said it is becoming difficult to defend UNRA’s budget requests when the body keeps returning the money. Buikwe County South Member of Parliament David Mutebi wondered if UNRA has the capacity to absorb all the money request for. He asked them to better plan ahead.
But Engineer Kasakya denied that UNRA returns money all the time. He explained that UNRA returned the 3 trillion because the procurement process hadn’t been finalized but now the body is ready and needs the money more than it did last year.
In the engagement meeting different stakeholders have highlighted roads that need to be attended to UNRA.