ANGRY MINISTER NABAKOOBA GIVES STRICT DEADLINE TO CONTRACTOR TO COMPLETE THE USMID PROJECT ROAD WORKS IN MBARARA CITY

-Says time for contractors to play around with government money is over
Sets March deadline
We want progress of government development projects not delays

Disappointed by the slow pace in the execution of works ,Lands Minister Judith Nabakooba has now given till end of March-the deadline for Multiplex Construction Company, the contractor heading the construction of USMID roads in Mbarara City to complete the projects they are working on or face serious repercussions .

Nabakooba was on Friday afternoon inspecting the progress of the USMID-project works in company of area members of Parliament was dismayed with what she found on ground. USMID road works in Mbarara City were launched early last year and completion is expected in May 2022 as per the terms of the contract. However, the works are behind schedule and Nababooka said that the time for contractors not to take government development work seriously was over .

The tough talking minister of Lands then directed that the contractor should have finished the road works by March this year and to the agreed standards .

Hon.Nabakooba told the consulting engineers how she is not pleased with the progress of their work and was not ready to listen to their explanations since they have done enough of these in the various engagements she has had with them at the Ministry headquarters in Kampala.

“I have given you up to end of March, fix these challenges because we are tired or else we shall get some other means. We cannot keep on getting complaints from one cluster all the time, why did you take on the work if you have no capacity yet there are other people who bided for similar work in the area and delivered on time,” the minister questioned.

The minister who could not hide her bitterness about the matter said it was a shame for the contractors not to respect the agreed timelines given to them. “You asked for the contract showing your ability to execute that is what I want to see. I want everything fixed. It seems you don’t want to spend yet you got the money. Spend it and recruit staff. Make sure that every area where you have presence has staff who are doing work,”She instructed.

“ The business people are looking at you, the government is looking at you, and you should do work because you got money to do so and not to dilly dally around.”

Rita Atukwasa the Woman MP for Mbarara City said traders were complaining about the delayed work on the USMID project in Mbarara. “The traders have been inconvenienced because there works have stalled without any plausible explanation . These contractors are taking us for granted ,”the woman MP stated.

“These contractors should be blacklisted because when you do business with government, they trust you to do the work and help the people but it has become a norm that every day we should come and inspect,” she said.She expressed her dissatisfaction with the fact that people around the city actually think the leaders ate the money and the contractors won the contract with no money since they neither have staff nor a resident engineer.

“The best thing they do is to hope staff from one place to another between the three municipalities of Mbarara, Kbaale and Ntungamo each time someone is coming to supervise.”

The consulting team leader who was at the site confessed that it was true they have had some delays owing to a number of factors like relocation of utility services and the fact that the consultant came on board much later and they had to first start with the reviews of the designs which took a period of three months.

“It is true that the work has had a slow progress but there were those issues that hindered progress. It is true there are staffing gaps and we have tried to cover them in the last two months. We are going to be more strict on the supervision and ensure that all your concerns are addressed,” he told the minister.

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