Following the directive by president Museveni for UPDF to take over the construction of all construction works for health facilities in the country, FDC strong man Dr Kizza Besigye has expressed his dissappointment towards the move saying this is another looting spree for the first family.
On July,1,2021, the president directed that all new government school and hospital projects should be handled by the UPDF Engineering Brigade starting the 2021/ 2022 financial year.
However, in a September 29, 2021 letter the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health, Dr.Diana Atwiine has written to Chief Administrative Officers and town clerks for all districts, municipalities and town councils to inform them of the directive that she says should be implemented immediately.
“The purpose of this communication is to present to you the UPDF Engineering Brigade represented by the National Enterprise Corporation that will be constructing all health facilities effective financial year 2021/22. I ask you to organize for the handover of all sites for construction works to the UPDF Engineering Brigade represented by NEC to prepare for the commencement of construction works,” Dr.Atwiine says.
The Health Ministry Permanent Secretary however informed the town clerks and CAOs that they will still be responsible for the direct works supervision and contract management.
In his July,1 directive, the president said that over time, the UPDF Engineering Brigade has been able to build capacity to handle several projects ranging from a simple, high level, and then to advanced construction projects.
He noted the move would help avoid the delays that have several times been occasioned to government projects by the contractors.
“I have noted with concern that many of the government projects in other sectors are often delayed due to lengthy procurement processes and in other cases, corruption perpetrated by some unscrupulous government Workers. I am very certain that we can avoid all these delays in implementing government construction projects by utilizing the army construction brigade to undertake these works,” Museveni said.
However, according to the four-time presidential candidate and forum for democratic change strong man, Dr. Kizza Besigye, this move is another looting spree launched to waste taxi payers’ money.
Besigye further noted that all these projects are under the watch of the first family.
”Mr M7 directed that UPDF takes overall construction under Health & Education ministries. Being non-competitive, they set their price! UPDF Construction Brigade is under M7’s son, Education under his wife & Health, under Dr Atwiine, his daughter!” Besigye said.
The UPDF Engineering Brigade was involved in the construction of the Namugongo martyrs shrine, Mbuya military referral hospital, Kololo independence grounds and housing units in various army barracks throughout the country.
The brigade also constructed the UPDF Mubende hospital that provides artificial limbs to soldiers who lose limbs during war as well as the new shs7.9 billion state of the art facilities at the National Institute of Leadership (NALI) at Kyankwanzi in Kyankwanzi district.