Musa Ecwero, the State Minister of Works and Transport explained that the Government and World Bank have partnered to co-finance the rehabilitation and maintenance of the Lira-Kamdini road section under the North Eastern Road Asset Management Project – NERAMP.
The Ministry of Works and Transport
on Friday blamed the delay of the commencement of Lira – Kamdini road reconstruction work on the stringent conditions on environmental and social impact studies set by the World Bank for its loan.
The explanation was given following threats of nude protests
by the community instigated by area legislators and local leaders over the deteriorating
condition of the road.
The protest promoters described deep potholes on road as unbearable and unsafe
for road users.
On Tuesday 18 January, North Kyoga police
arrested Issa Otto Amiza, the former Oyam South lawmaker after allegedly getting intelligence reports that he was the ringleader behind the proposed illegal demo about the motorway that has remained appalling since 2009 with at
least 98 known accident black spots.
Musa Ecwero, the State Minister of
Works and Transport explained that the Government and World Bank have partnered
to co-finance the rehabilitation and maintenance of the Lira-Kamdini road
section under the North Eastern Road Asset Management Project – NERAMP.
Ecwero told journalists at
the Uganda Media Centre that the NERAMP project covers 340 kilometres covering Tororo-Mbale-Lira-Kamdini, to be executed in first and second lots,
with the 66 kilometres of Lira-Kamdini road stretch forming part of lot two.
Ecwero says there has been routine maintenance
on the entire Tororo-Kamdini corridor, but as an innovative project being
piloted in Uganda, the long-term asset management contracts require Output and
Performance-Based Contracting – OPRC.
He pointed out that the Lira –
Kamdini section requires extra intervention due to the extent of road deterioration
with the contractor, Mota-Engil Africa, a Portuguese firm is unable to commence the heavy
rehabilitation required due to non-compliance to the requisite environmental
and social safeguards.
The World Bank loan conditions require strict compliance to environmental and social standards. For instance, Ecweru cited
that one of the conditions require World Bank’s approval of the environmental
and social safeguards studies including the construction materials.
//Cue in; “The conditions of…//
Cue out…causing a delay.”//
Implementation of the environmental
and social safeguards is important to ensure the road works do not negatively
affect the society in the project area. In the meantime, the contractor has
been instructed to intensify the maintenance activities to keep the road motor-able.
//Cue in; “In the meantime…//
Cue out…bank for approval.”//
Meanwhile, Isaac Menya, the Manager Network
Planning under the Uganda National Roads Authority – UNRA attributed the deterioration
of roads to various conditions ranging from poor workmanship and maintenance among
others that affect its design life.
//Cue in; “A road is as good…//
Cue out…the various roads.”//
The Lira-Kamdini highway is known as a main commercial
connection route for Lango sub region linking the Uganda-Kenya boarder of Busia through Tororo, Soroti, and Lira to South Sudan via Gulu City.
A December 2018 Global Road
Safety Facility report launched by the World Bank recommended improvement of safety measures along
the North Eastern Road Corridor to make it safe for users such as increasing the two-lanes to four-lanes with guardrails in major
also identified several bottlenecks including rapid urbanization along the corridor,
poor road design that doesn’t conform with the geographical landscape; steep
embankments, limited speed control measures and recommended use of speed guns,
installation of speed humps, and delineation of horizontal curves to enhance
Ochola's journalism career begun from Radio King 90.2 FM in Gulu around 2009, and Radio Rupiny 95.7 Fm under Vision Group in 2012. He also reported for Mighty Fire 91.5 Fm, Kitgum in 2015 before joining Wizarts Foundation in 2017.
He has been reporting for Uganda Radio Network (URN) since 2017 before being posted as Bureau Chief Kitgum, and latr Gulu between 2018 - 2021. Currently, he reports from Parliament.