In order to give the contractor enough time to complete construction of the Katuna one-stop border post between Rwanda and Uganda. According to Rebecca Alitwala Kadaga, the first deputy prime minister and minister of East African affairs, the Ugandan government is considering diverting trucks from the Katuna border post to the Mirama hills border post.
Kadaga claims that after the government became concerned about how the Katuna border one-stop post had taken more than 7 years to complete, and after the cabinet resolved in July to find out why the work was delayed, they visited the border town and discovered a number of reasons for the delay.
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Kadaga added that they learnt that the border post has been under construction for the last seven years. She said that looking at Uganda’s side and Rwanda’s side, which is already complete, they came to establish how the border post could be under construction for the past seven years and yet not be finalized.
According to her, the government failed to give the ground enough time to harden before commencing the construction of the Katuna One-stop border station. This led to the discovery that it was built on a wetland.
Which factors contributed to the delay
The withdrawal of the World Bank and the European Union, according to her, also caused to the delay. She asserts that the government must speed things up by providing more funding.
Kadaga stated they must present their findings to the cabinet.
One of the proposals is that the government temporarily divert traffic to the Mirama border post in Ntungamo. The idea will allow the contractor to complete the project on the border post. This is also to give them time to correct some faults.
The Amugoli General Enterprises Limited’s Eng. Robert Joseph Eyatu attributed the cracks in the tarmac on the heavy trucks that damaged the concrete. He said that the concrete had only been laid three days before the border reopened in February 2022.
Uganda resumes construction works at Katuna border post
The government of Uganda has announced to have resumed construction at Katuna border, Uganda’s main gateway to Rwanda after it secured US $1.9m out of the over US $4m required to see completion of the entire project.
State minister for Planning, Mr David Bahati, confirmed the reports and said that the government will fund the whole project after World bank pulled out in 2014 over alleged breach of contract halting the works.
“It is our wish that the construction of this one stop border post is completed as soon as possible so that the traders can access the desired services. There is need for close supervision to make sure that there is value for money on this multi-billion project,” said Mr David Bahati.
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Katuna border post
The border post is set to facilitate quick clearance of goods and create employment to the locals. The work is expected to be completed in December.
Amugoli General Enterprises Ltd was awarded the contract in July 2014 but later stopped working due to non-payment. However the company’s managing director, Mr Joseph Eyatu, affirmed that they are back on the site.
Morever, Mr. Bahati said that government through the ministries of Foreign Affairs, and Trade was arranging to meet the Rwandan government to harmonize cross-border trade and streamline the security of members of the business community following alleged harassment of Ugandan traders in Rwanda, citing several cases.