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Archive for the tag “Namanve”

Kampala’s BRT at this stage is a pipe-dream!

The Bus Rapid Transport system together with a Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (MATA), in the midst of the Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA), Kampala City Hall and Ministry of Kampala. This are having different heads combined with the mastermind on the top President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni. Doesn’t matter what the ones in the parishes are considering, the Division Mayors, Lord Mayor Lukwago, KCCA Director Musisi or even State Minister Kamya. The one rubber-stamping the initiatives is and will be the President. Since he has his finger into everything.

That is why I have no faith in BRT. Even if it is stop the congestion, the lack of public transport in Kampala and problems of control of the Boda-Boda’s, the authority of the Taxi’s and the Specials. There are still significant issues to be reached. It doesn’t matter if they are banning or stopping certain transport options. As long as the ones working, are the taxis and boda-boda’s. These are the ones who has designated routes and travels with licensing for their routes. The Taxis are usually used Toyota Hiace imported from Japan, second-hand ones who was former bread-trucks, who are rebuilt to fit as many people as possible.

While a BRT means there will be heavy investments in stages, in divisions and in congested areas to fit the paradigm of buses. It isn’t barely putting buses on the road and assume the population will start taking it. The need for steady implementation of road structure, of bus-companies, of driving schools and of time-tables has to be put on order to make sense for the citizens to use it. Since it needs to be better than the transportation options that are today, like the taxis, boda-boda’s and specials. At this stage the Uganda Investment Authority (UIA) in their feasibility study estimates the needed funds to get it going at this point to be the staggering $612.06 Million. With today’s value of the Uganda Shillings it is about Shs. 2,193,883,999,999 UGX, in other terms over 2.1 trillion shillings. Which means one tenth of the Financial Year budget of 21 Trillion Shillings in FY 2017/2018. Just to put in perspective.

This infrastructure project of this size and ramification better make the roads of Kampala into bricks out of gold. Clear every single pothole and make sure the gravel grade more than standard. This project has been going on for ages without any movement or significant progress. Why I am writing about it, well there suddenly if it is true, some Chinese Investors who wants to touch the erratic transport system of Kampala. This are together with the Chinese Ambassador to Uganda, at the State House discussing investments into it. Therefore, the sudden move of actual fueled money into it. As the 2.1 Trillion shillings doesn’t grow on trees.

President Museveni stated this today:

The Kampala Metropolitan Rapid Bus Transport project is a necessity. We should not continue to have so many cars with limited capacity” (…) “The investor will construct 26 rapid bus stations, 420 stage shelters and an initial 400 buses with a carting capacity of 74 passengers” (Museveni, 18.06.2017).

With this unknown Chinese Investor, they are clearly indicating some infrastructure and some buses to put up. If this will see the light of day and will be honestly implemented, than there are start, but it takes time to find routes and needed ways to make it profitable, as there will also be lost oppertunities for the ones who used taxis, specials and boda-boda’s on these roads. That is if this isn’t a scheme and plot of manufacturing more monies through the state-house. Which wouldn’t be surprising knowing how the President often operate.

The BRT would be a bonus and strengthen the congestive traffic of Kampala, a needed one for more time working and less time stuck in traffic jams. It would be important for the citizens leaving the divisions and traveling across town to work. But the state haven’t been able in the recent years to pull it off. Maybe Chinese investments would help it and their involvement in it would see it moving. But it shouldn’t just be the President’s blessings over the investments. The KCCA, Ministry of Kampala and City Hall should all have a say and make reports on how to build it properly. As the UIA even states there have only been a feasibility-study. That is preparation for the solution, but not the white paper or even framework for the Divisions or Central Business District of Kampala to make the BRT a success. Right now it is dream, which most likely could turn into a nightmare before its shuttle.

NAMA Proposals in 2013 are even more costly: “The capital costs budgeted over the 15 year period were estimated to total some US$ 1.181 Billion”. That is the double of the estimates from UIA in 2017. Therefore, something has either been scaled down or the NAMA was considering more aspects in their plans, than the UIA has. But is not like the President today has delivered any paperwork or reveled any sort of information what sort of possible deal he done with the “the Investor”. He could be scapegoat or even a mirage for all we know. Because none is on the up and up.

Especially considering he had a meeting with them at the State House in Entebbe with none of the leadership of Kampala. The ones in Kampala will just later get the news of the building and investments, therefore has to figure out how to implement it and work-out the perks. Parts of me wonder if the President even has looked into the documentation and considered the needed partners in play. But that is just how the President operates. He just can build Rome on his own or Kampala for that matter. He has all the skills and the brown envelopes at his disposal. Peace.

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#Scambailouts; Moses Musinguzi Vs. Bailed Out Companies on Good Governance (29.07.2016)

Petition 28.07.2016 P1Petition 28.07.2016 P2Petition 28.07.2016 P3Petition 28.07.2016 P4

Seemingly the Ugandan Government bailing-out corporations… or is it way of Mzee to give monies to his loyal cronies?

Scambailouts Uganda

There are talks of bailing out businesses or corporations in Uganda, as the failing; it is not only the Republic of Uganda or the Government of Uganda is striking more and more debt to fulfil the budgets. As that happens, the businesses together with Ugandan Banks are sustaining investments and fiscal monetary situation for industries and businesses; something that is occurring with a steady pace.

The Steady Progress from the National Resistance Movement comes with a price of loyalty of the cronies and the elite; that happen to be fundraising for the NRM-O before the General Election of 2016 and building the famous “NRM-House”, for some strange reason never sees the light of day. Dwindling away in T-Shirt Money and other ways of funding the expensive campaign of ruling regime.

Here is some of the companies and some information on them. There are many more, but this shows certain levels of questions and also, the needed for funding should be gone, except if the owners have allegiance to the NRM-Regime. So it seems like the Executive wants them to have debt and all of a sudden he needs to save them.

Shumuk

Shumuk Aluminium who has failed on loans; these loans are Shs. 8.2bn to DFCU Bank, Shs. 6.6bn to Baroda Bank and Shs. 17bn to Crane Bank. The Shumuk Group have been an industrial manufacture that has made everything from steel to plastic bottles in Uganda since 1984. That is now troubled in debt, has also gotten donor-aid or grants through Danish Aid in 2008 on the level of USD 170.102 and in 2006 a total USD 167.940.; Still with time been able to get unsustainable, really?

Roofing Steel Mines have failed loans; Shs. 201bn to IFC and Shs. 8bn to Diamond Trust Bank. Company’s assets supposed to be Shs. 15bn. It’s a company that has existing since 1994. “Mr. Sikander Lalani, Roofings Group has recently completed its ambitious expansion plan by commissioning Roofings Rolling Mills (RRM) limited, a Ugx320 billion(US$127 million) mega project which is set to change the face of steel manufacturing in the East African Region. This state of the art complex is located in Kampala Industrial Business Park, Namanve” (Constructionreviewonline.com, 2013). In 2014: “Prime Minister Amama Mbabazi and his wife Jacqueline were the chief guests at the Serena event, hailing the Lalani family for creating jobs for Ugandans in their business empire and contributing to economic development of Uganda” (Scoop.co.ug, 24.01.2014). Apparently now the business of Lalani is creating a debt issue and not jobs.

BM Steel has debt of Shs. 66bn. President Museveni said this about the company in the 2015: “The recycled steel that is being produced by Casements, Roofings, Tembo Steel, BM Steel (Mwebesa), Modern Steel etc. cannot be used for very high-rise buildings, hydro-power dams etc. It does not have that strength” (Museveni, 29.04.2015). With this in mind the quality of the steel is low, but their debt is still raising, and the same apparently with Roofing as well, who has debt. Worrying sign?

Salim Selah NAPIL

Namunkekera Agro Processing Industries Ltd (NAPIL) has an outstanding debt of Shs. 4.8bn to the Uganda Development Bank. It was incorporated 25.06.2007. It is a business run by the family member of President Museveni, General Salim Selah. In 2015 Gen. Selah said this: “made these remarks as he toured 40 agriculture projects under the umbrella of Namunkekera Agro Processing Industries Limited (NAPIL) in Kapeeka” (NTV Uganda, 20.03.2015). So the Government will on this bail-out the family member for his miscalculation on the Agricultural investment.

Job Coffee got a debt of Shs. 21.3bn to Stanbic Bank. In the month of September 2014 number 7 exporters from Uganda, with 7,960 bags of coffee. Total market share of 2013/2014 we’re 1.97%. What has happen since is not easy to know, but what is certain is that they have accumulated debt.

Simba Group owned by Patrick Bitature has debts of Shs. 210bn. In 2012 Forbes wrote this about him: “Bitature is the founder and chairman of Simba Telecom, East Africa’s largest mobile phone retailer with over 100 modern retail outlets in Uganda, Tanzania and Kenya Telecom. The company is also the largest mobile phone airtime distributor in the region. Bitature owns Protea Hotels Kampala, a 5-star hotel located in the upmarket suburb of Kololo in Kampala. He is also chairs the Uganda Investment Authority and Umeme, an energy distribution firm which is gearing up for an IPO on the Uganda Stock Exchange” (Nsehe, 06.11.2012). In 2015 in the African Report said this: “When asked about his net worth, he says: “That I don’t talk about. I have shares in listed companies in London, Johannesburg and here. The share prices keep changing. All I know is that I have a portfolio of different companies.” He says Simba Group employs more than 1,700 people” (Mbanga, 19.06.2015). Certainly he should talk about his net-worth now as his being bailed-out in Uganda, maybe he should sell some of the companies in London and Johannesburg, if he is as rich as that or maybe it is just big-talk?

Freedom City

Grapes Construction has a debt of Shs. 100bn to Stanbic Bank. Who owns the Freedom City Mall in Kampala; The owner of Grapes Construction is subsidiary of Grapes Group who is owned by John Ssebalamu. In 2014 he had an issue with the Kenyan renter at the mall of the Company UCHUMI: “At the end of last year, it emerged that Ssebalamu the owner of Freedom City had sued UCHUMI for failure to pay him arrears amounting to over Shs340million” (Red Pepper, 2014). In 2015 he had monies to spend on the NRM: “John Ssebalamu shs100M”. This Shs. 100m was going to build the NRM House, so the coins given seems to give back profits. (Xclusive.co.ug, 28.06.2015).

Sojovalo Hotel has debt of Shs. 8.3bn to the Kenya Commercial Bank. The owner William George Kajoba also gave Shs 50M to the NRM House(Xclusive.co.ug, 28.06.2015). So with this new project from the government, the pledge in 2015 gave a hand back to the businessman and his Hotel close to the Kabaka in Kampala.

Krone Limited Uganda

Krone Uganda Limited owes Shs. 2.5bn to the Tropical Bank; the business has 3.000 empolyees. Krone Uganda Ltd is the largest miner and exporter of wolfram (tungsten). In the Daily Monitor in 2015, this was written about the company: “the ministry refused to allow them export three containers – 20 metric tons of wolfram worth about Shs1.4 billion ($450,000) that is stuck in various warehouses. They are charged Shs640, 000 ($200) every day as “demurrage” (charges that the charterer pays to the ship-owner for its extra use of the vessel) since February” (Musisi, 18.07.2015). So the government own policy on mining and Value-Added Producing is the reason behind the debt growth of Krone Uganda Limited.

MS Frank Ssonko Ltd owes Shs3.5bn to the Crane Bank, but got assets worth Shs. 9.9bn. Another one is Ahmed Zziwa owes Shs. 10bn, but has assets worth Shs. 20bn. Ahmed Zziwa are the owner of Anglo Fabric (Bolton) limited who imports and sells soap in Uganda. Steven Mukasa owes Shs. 10bn. While having Shs. 40bn in assets. Even owning land on Makerere University, at the level of 8 Acres and even at one point was putting Prof. Baryamureba for stealing Shs. 140m of building material from him in 2010. So he must be NRM guy!

I hope this was enough for now. Not to talk about too much tax-money given away in the name of saving them, instead of making the rich even richer! Peace.

Press Release: URC, KCCA and RVRU resume Passanger Rail Service in Kampala (02.12.2015)

URC KCCA 021215

They have done it before, take a look:

KCCAUG 2014

In 2012:

“The Ministry of Transport at the weekend authorised the Rift Valley Railways (RVR) to temporarily run passenger rail services in a move to add pressure on striking taxi drivers.RVR will transport passengers Monday to Friday, from Namanve to Kampala and back at Shs1,500. In the morning, there are two shifts that depart Namanve at 7am and 8am. Evening shifts leave Kampala at 5:30pm and 7pm. Each shift can transport 550 passengers using five coaches”.

Quick thinking:

So they have done it before, will be able to do it now? Secondly, how long will it last before it break down or the money is gone and the trains lay astray somewhere? Peace.

 

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