Uganda: UPDF to build 30,000 housing units

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Uganda, through the Uganda People’s Defence Force is planning to spend US$177 million ( 17 billion Shillings) in in a housing project that would involve constructing 30,000 housing units for the soldiers. This is according to the 2015/2016 budget framework paper for the country. The units will be of great help to soldiers who are currently residing in barracks around the country.

The housing project will be undertaken by UPDF’s Engineering Brigade together with Medallion Engineering Limited from China.

The cost of land is estimated at 1.2 billion Shillings while construction of the housing units will cost 16 billion Shillings. The houses will accommodate a total of 7500 families of the UPDF. Uganda forces have already started first phase construction, which will comprise of 16 units at the Masaka Armored Brigade.

The housing project is expected to help a major project to phase out grass thatched houses, a program launched in 2011. In addition to the project, the defense forces will also undertake construction of Air force hospital in Entebbe and the renovation of old buildings that are under the UPDF’s control.

The housing project, if implemented, will see the security sector take a 1.2 trillion Shillings – which is largest amount in the budget. Last year, it was announced that Shelter Afrique would spend US$200m in a housing project that would benefit 20, 000 Ugandans. The four year project would involve construction of 4,000 commercial and social housing units, schools, health centers and waste management facilities.

Uganda is suffering a massive housing deficit standing at 1.3 million units and is in need of affordable housing units. The country is just among many of the countries that are suffering from lack of affordable houses. The shortage has been fueled by increased urbanization and high population growth. Many countries are also seeing mass housing as a solution to the problem and others are already using new technologies to address the issue.