Jinja to Tax Umeme Properties to Clear Power Bill

In Jinja town, a power blackout has persisted for two months, owing to the town council’s failure to pay Shs 660m in electricity bill arrears.

Businesses in town close by 6pm to avoid criminals who would take aantage of the cover of darkness to steal. Municipal council speaker, Abubaker Maganda told The Observer on March 27 that the town has been put in danger by Umeme.

“They disconnected all the security lights about two months [ago]. Our people are in danger and businesses are making losses,” he said.

The municipal public relations officer, Rajab Kitto, said Umeme is demanding the municipality Shs 600m. In retaliation, Jinja Mayor Mohammad Kezaala Baswari proposed to council that they should start levying tax on Umeme’s properties in the municipality.

“As council, we are going to charge Umeme’s properties that include transformers, electricity poles and office premises in town so that we get funds to cover up the debts,” Kezaala said.

The proposal got overwhelming support. The council resolved that once they raise the revenue through taxes, they will pay bills and get re-connected. At the same council meeting, it was discovered that Walukuba Health Centre IV had spent three months without water.

Source : The Observer