Authorities in Nakasongola District, Uganda, are facing delays in utilizing a Shs250 million road grant that was received in the first quarter due to a lack of clear guidelines for its usage, despite the poor condition of various community access roads in the area. The Shs250 million is part of the Shs1 billion that the government allocated to each district for road works.
The district chairperson, Mr. Sam Kigula, explained that they have the funds in the district account but are awaiting clear guidelines for its utilization. He emphasized that they prefer the money to be used for road maintenance to address the poor state of many roads, rather than focusing on rehabilitation.
Some of the access roads in Nakasongola District are in extremely poor condition, including the Kansiira-Lwabyata and Ntuuti-Nabutaka routes, which are nearly impassable. The deteriorating roads are causing difficulties for residents accessing essential services such as health facilities and schools.
Mr. Rogers Sunday Bwanga, the Nakasongola District council speaker, expressed concern about the lack of clear guidelines, which has made authorities hesitant to use the funds. He noted that the ongoing rainy season is exacerbating the road conditions, increasing maintenance costs.
Residents have also voiced their concerns about the deteriorating roads. Mr. Godfrey Ssemaganda, a resident of Lwabyata Sub-county, emphasized the need for maintenance to address potholes that are making the Ntuuti-Lwabyata road difficult to navigate, especially during the rainy season.
In neighboring Nakaseke District, leaders have decided to use their Shs250 million grant for road rehabilitation. Similar discussions are taking place in Luweero District, where the roads committee is awaiting communication from the Ministry of Local Government to determine the next course of action.
While the Minister for Local Government, Mr. Raphael Magyezi, indicated that guidelines for the utilization of the Shs1 billion road grant had been circulated to local governments, many districts have not received new guidelines for the Shs250 million road grant allocated for the first quarter of the Financial Year 2023/2024. The lack of clear guidelines has led to delays in addressing the critical road infrastructure needs in these districts.
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