Residents of Mbale Municipality are up in arms against Plinth Technical Services and municipal authorities over the state of roads.
Residents led by Mr Safiyi Wakhayete, the chairman of the Municipality Leaders Forum, told Daily Monitor last week that they are protesting bad roads and constant dust which are hindering their businesses.
Plinth Technical Services (PTS), the company that won a tender to reconstruct Republic Street Road, Pallisa Road, Nabuyonga Rise and Bugisu Hill roads at the cost of Shs12 billion, has removed the entire tarmac on the roads. The roads are now riddled with large potholes and are constantly dusty.
Whenever it rains, the roads become muddy.
During day time dust swirls over and into houses, shops and offices as vehicles drive through the affected roads.
Work on the roads was stopped barely a week ago by Mbale authorities following complaints of shoddy work and design issues.
The Mbale District engineer, Mr William Nangosya, said Plinth Technical Services misinterpreted the road designs.
Mr Nangosya described the reconstruction of Republic and Pallisa roads as sub-standard and a waste of resources.
“It is absolutely wrong for Plinth to make a road that goes above the basement and verandahs of buildings in town. This cannot pass basic evaluation test and I don’t know the merits and basis of the World Bank awarding the contracts to PTS,” said Mr Nangosya.
The road inspector, Ms Rhoda Nyaribi, who doubles as the municipal environment officer, said although it is clear in the contract that the road has to be watered to be environmentally friendly, PTS is not doing it regularly.
However, a PTS engineer, Mr Mbuzi Balwadde, insisted the road designs made by Prome Consultants were faulty, adding that they even aised the municipal engineer to change it.
“We won the contract and we have done what was expected of us according to the design given to us,” said Mr Balwadde.
The managing director of Prome Consultants, Mr Hubert Kibuuka, said as a consultancy, they did their work and it was approved by World Bank but the contractor misinterpreted the design.
Mbale authorities recently stopped construction of the roads until a new design has been made. The move follows complaints of shoddy work and flaws on Republic Street that houses over two hundred shops, hotels, banks and other business offices.
The municipal council spokesperson, Mr James Kutosi, said they have studied the road and asked another consultant, Blessed Services, to redesign the road before construction starts again.
The Mbale roads are being reconstructed under Uganda Support to Municipality Infrastructural Development funded by World Bank
SOURCE: Daily Monitor