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World Bank Monitors Grill Masaka Officials Over USMID Project

Joseph Kimbowa, the Masaka Town clerk defended the existence of the 17 houses in the road reserve saying since the project didnt provide for compensation, they just negotiated with the property owners to leave them.
World Bank Officials pointing at the surface of Yellow Knife in Masaka which they say is poorly constructed.

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A team of World Bank officials has grilled Masaka Municipal council officials on the implementation of road works under the Uganda Support to Municipality Infrastructure Development–USMID project.  

In 2014, Masaka Municipality received Shillings 30 billion from World Bank to undertake major rehabilitation of Yellow knife road, Buddu, Kabula, Edward Avenue and Ssese streets.  The municipality contracted Longjian Road and Bridge Company limited, a Chinese firm, to execute the road works.

This morning, a team of ten World Bank officials visited Masaka to inspect the road works. The team comprised of two Eritreans, an Indian and seven Ugandans. The team grilled Masaka Municipal council officials led by the Engineer Augustus Turibarungi, Pauline Nabadda, the Municipality Environment officer, Joseph Kimbowa, the Town Clerk and the Chinese contractors.

They tasked the officials to explain why 17 houses earmarked for demolition in the road reserve at Kimanya along Yellow knife road yet they were still standing. An official on the World Bank, who preferred anonymity because he isn\'t authorised to speak to the media, told URN they found gaps in the project works. He cited the poor workmanship on the drainage along Yellow Knife road, which he said exposes it to run off water. They also questioned why the drainage empties water in resident\'s homes. 

Some of the residents reported Municipal council officials to the World Bank team for alleged failure to supervise the contractor and compel him to water the dusty road, which they said has affected their business. Joseph Kimbowa, the Masaka Town clerk defended the existence of the 17 houses in the road reserve saying since the project didn\'t provide for compensation, they just negotiated with the property owners to leave them.

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An official from Longjian Road and Bridge Company, who declined to identify himself, refused to respond to the queries raised by the World Bank team, saying he is not authorized to speak on behalf of the company.  He told the officials that his superiors were away in Lukaya town council while others were in Kampala for official work.

The construction of Yellow Knife is expected to be completed in the next two month before the second phase of the project kicks off. Buddu Street, Kabula Street, Edward Avenue and Ssese Street will be worked on in the second phase.

 

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