President Yoweri Museveni has said that government security machinery is going to decisively deal with the rampant vandalism of the country’s electricity infrastructure . He said that although the problem that is costing the country millions of US dollars and leaving many parts of the country in prolonged blackouts- has not yet been officially brought to his attention , he was confident that the perpetrators shall be arrested.
“When we step in this problem shall be eliminated . We are going to arrest whoever is involved . This problem is here in Uganda and not Congo -we are going to deal with it decisively ,” President Museveni stated while responding to questions from journalists on why government has been slow in dealing with the problem which appears to be- acts of national economic sabotage .
A jovial President Museveni was answering questions from media representatives and journalists on a number of important national issues during an end of year interactive session held in Kampala.
While addressing the media recently the Minister of Energy and Mineral Development , Hon. Ruth Nankabirwa said that in the last two years alone, the government has lost over $2 billion to the vandalism of electricity infrastructure. “We have to deal with this vice the way we deal with terrorism. Vandalism continues to cost the sector billions of shillings. We have requested for the services of the UPDF to guard key electricity infrastructure such as transmission towers and substations,” said Nankabirwa.
Despite huge investments in the sector, the minister explained that Uganda continues to grapple with rampant cases of vandalism of power transmission and distribution infrastructure and urged the public to be vigilant and report those responsible the nearest police station and sister security agencies.
Nankabirwa explained that by cutting down electricity supply network it leads to wanton- power blackouts, threatens national security and homes; increases the cost of doing business and electricity tariffs, and disrupts vital health and education services as well as people’s livelihoods.
One electricity tower costs in the excess of 20,000 USDs and if not stemmed the economic loss to the country runs in billions of shillings .
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