By Steven Enatu
The Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development will not procure street lights for Soroti City.
This was revealed by the Commissioner for Urban Development in the Ministry, Joseph Walter Pade while meeting Soroti City Council Authority and World Bank officials who had come to assess the ongoing works under USMID –ADF yesterday 1st April, 2021.
Pade said if the City Authority deems street lighting as a priority, it should then use local revenue.
This was after the acting City Mayor, Paul Omer while giving his remarks before the team of World Bank officials who had come to assess the ongoing works under USMID –ADF asked them to clarify on the street light project that the Ministry halted.
According to Omer, the City Town Clerk, Moses Otimong in the financial year 2019/2020 briefed the executive team that the ministry through the Project Support Team had allowed the council to procure the lights for Soroti city that to be installed from the Late Mzee Ekayu’s place up to Odokomit.
Omer notes that the project has been halted and the procured contractor by the council has dragged them to court for failing to sign the contract as awarded.
Pade who was representing the Permanent Secretary Ministry said that the street lighting project could not go far because the ministry was looking at priorities amidst meager resources.
He said that if the ministry had gone for street lights, there would be no road construction projects ongoing. Adding that the road network projects ongoing currently in Ediegu, Skool , Adams and Harridas roads all have the component of street lights.
“Let’s not interfere with the issue of the road. We are aware the citizens want lights for security but also USMID has not come to take over government intervention, if you want street lights, use local revenue,” he said.
Soroti city is currently undertaking the Uganda Support to Municipal Infrastructure Development (USMID-ADF) project worth 17.5 billion in the construction of the above stated streets.