Power distributor Umeme has given educational institutions a one-year grace period to pay outstanding arrears.
With only about three weeks to resume business, Umeme says many educational institutions are still unable to meet their bills because of the lockdown hence the decision to revise the repayment plan.
Speaking to journalists, Umeme’s managing director Selestino Babungi said they understand the negative impact that the pandemic has had on academic institutions and that that’s why they decided to adopt the one-year grace period.
“We understand that they are under difficult situations in that they don’t have extra revenues, they have a lot of operating costs to meet. They have actually to restart the whole system, it requires a significant cost to reboot,” Babungi said.
Babungi added that through various engagements with partners like financial institutions, Umeme, NWSC and others, they recognise that there is need to support these institutions as partners.
Currently, Umeme says education institutions owe over Shs 5 billion in arrears in power bills. The arrears accumulated over the two years since government announced the closure of schools to contain the spread of Covid-19 in the country.
Selestino says that even though Umeme’s 20-year concession has only three years to expire, they are committed to continuing to provide services to Ugandans regardless of the challenges.
“At Umeme, we are totally and remain committed to delivering our mandate throughout this period,”