In a significant development, the central government has taken charge of the ongoing construction projects in Luweero District, a move met with mixed reactions from stakeholders.
The Prime Minister, Ms. Robinah Nabbanja, announced that the responsibility for completing the Luweero hospital and the Luweero District Administration headquarters will now rest with the central government. President Museveni has issued directives for the UPDF Engineering Brigade to oversee and fund these projects.
The district had previously employed various local contractors, managing construction in phases as funds became available. However, with the UPDF Brigade taking the reins, the government aims to expedite the projects. The Premier, Ms. Nabbanja, urged local leaders to shift their focus to other essential initiatives like road development and social and economic mobilization, hoping to finally silence the criticism about stalled works.
Mr. Ronald Ndawula, the Luweero District NRM party chairperson, viewed this development positively, believing it could boost the NRM’s image. He expressed the hope that these structures would be completed before the 2026 General Elections.
Mr. Erusto Kibirango, the Luweero District chairperson, stressed the need for additional space at the hospital to accommodate the growing number of patients. He hoped that the completion of the hospital block would lead to the opening of currently non-operational departments.
Dr. Innocent Nkonwa, the Luweero District Health Officer, added that the hospital would gain the capacity to activate several dormant departments, thanks to the expansion.
Luweero hospital, originally an upgrade of Luweero Health Centre IV to a general hospital in 2011, has been constructing a 200-bed patient ward for the past 12 years. The project, estimated at Shs7.2 billion, faced repeated delays due to insufficient funds. Presently, only the first and second floors are completed and operational.
The District administration headquarters project began in 2016 when the district council, led by Mr. Ronald Ndawula, embarked on constructing a four-story district office block. This was after years of waiting for government compensation for the buildings taken over by the Ministry of Defence in Bombo. President Museveni had pledged government compensation during the early years of NRM rule, but this promise remained unfulfilled. The project’s estimated cost in 2016 was approximately Shs6.8 billion, but increasing construction material costs could push the total to around Shs7.5 billion.