The Government of Uganda has shelved plans to finance construction of critical oil roads using a 96.3 million Euros loan from the China Construction Bank Corporation.
The loan request had been tabled before parliament for financing of roads including Masindi – Biiso (54-km), Hohwa – Nyairongo-Kyarushesha – Butole (25 km) and Kabaale-Kiziranfumbi (25.7 km).
The request was tabled by Government Chief Whip Thomas Tayebwa and referred to the National Economy Committee for scrutiny.
The Committee led by Hon John Bosco Ikojo (Bukedea County) is mandated to among others make recommendations on all loan agreements according to Article 159 of the 1995 Constitution.
However, on Tuesday, December, 21, 2021; State Minister for Finance (General Duties) Henry Musasizi made a u turn, disclosing that government didn’t need the loan any more.
“Following internal reviews on project and financial performance, we feel using Government resources we can finance these roads without necessarily having to go to borrow externally. And in this regard Mr Chairman I wish to withdraw the loan request from consideration by the Committee and Parliament,” he stated.
Musasizi’s change of mind surprised some of the MPs including Nathan Byanyima (Bukanga County) and Fred Kayondo (Mukono South) who wondered how government had suddenly mobilized resources to this end and yet the same Government has on several occasions complained about being cash starved.
“Last week they brought this loan request to parliament and after one week they are withdrawing it…. You can’t convince this Committee that within two weeks you have mobilized that money,” Kayondo said.
In response however, Musasizi said the loan request had had been erroneously tabled due to a “mix up.”
The construction of the oil roads he said had “already been catered for in the National Budget and 51% of the work has already been done.”