Lack of funds hinders completion of Fort Portal City head office

FORT PORTAL – The construction of the headquarters of Fort Portal City Council still hangs in balance due to lack of money.

In 2010, the then Fort Portal Municipal Council embarked on the construction of its chambers at Boma Hill at a cost of Shs 3.5 billion.

The then municipal council had set 2015 as the year for completing the chambers; however, the struggle to complete the chambers started after the municipality injected Shs 1bln in the first phase of construction, which was also not fully completed.

According to the city mayor Edison Ruyonga Asaba, they are struggling to raise the funds for the completion of the structure.

“We are currently looking for money to complete our council chambers because as the city we don’t have money as of now which makes it hard to continue with the construction,” Asaba said.

He said in 2021, the city sought to enter into a public-private partnership to complete the project but up to now they are still looking for one.

The construction of the chambers has for the past years been dogged by controversy.

In 2011, the project was halted for two years after the municipal council terminated the contract of DECON, which had been awarded the tender.

Two years later, work resumed after another company Khalsa Construction Limited, was contracted.

In 2014, Alex Ruhunda who was then the Fort Portal municipality Member of Parliament clashed with some municipal council officials over funds meant for the construction of the chambers.

Ruhunda accused the technical staff led by the then town clerk Edward Lwanga of mismanaging Shs 300 million meant for the construction of the council chambers.

He claimed at the time that he was in possession of documents to prove that the Ministry of Finance had wired the money to Fort Portal Municipal Council bank account, but it was not utilised.

However, the Fort Portal City clerk, David Kyasanku revealed that as of now the city has no money that is already secured or put in the budget for the completion of their chambers.

“We are calling upon any organisation or company that wishes to partner with us in the completion of our chambers. As a city we are not seated but trying here and there to ensure we get money and do the completion,” Kyasanku said.

Currently, Fort Portal City Council has no chambers and has been hiring venues to hold sessions.

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