KAMPALA – A total of Ugx62.3b was lost in foreign exchange for funding allocations to Kampala Capital City Authority – KCCA for the second phase of the Institutional and Infrastructure Development Programme -KIIDP II, parliament heard on Friday.
The said money was equivalent to $17.08m – recorded as a loss in the process of converting it from the Special Drawing Rights – SDR, an accounting unit for transactions with member countries of the International Monetary Fund – IMF into an acceptable currency.
The value of DR is based on a basket of the world’s five leading currencies – the US Dollar; the Euro; the Japanese Yen; the Chinese Yuan; and the British Pound.
Uganda’s exchange was from SDR into the Dollar, according to Donny Kitabire – the acting Director of Treasury Services in KCCA.
Kitabire said the loss meant that the authority could not utilise the money for capital development as earlier planned. He was appearing before the Presidential Affairs Committee of Parliament on Friday to present the entity’s budget estimates for the next financial year.
KCCA Executive Director Dorothy Kisaka emphasised that the same loss hadn’t engineered.
The KIIDP II project that started on May 8, 2015, is aimed at widening, upgrading and constructing city roads, junctions, drainage and associated infrastructure. It is funded through a $175m loan from the International Development Association -IDA of the World Bank and counterpart funding of $8.75m.
Documents before the Presidential Affairs Committee indicate that as of September 30, 2022, the World Bank had disbursed $157.92m representing 90.24 per cent of the total project cost while $17.08m (9.76 per cent) was undisbursed due to exchange loss. The disbursed counterpart funds amount to $12.87m representing 147.1 per cent.
Although the project’s initial completion period was five years, up to May 31, 2020, this had been shifted four times further delaying the project to May 31 2023. Kitabire said the project has faced several other challenges like the suspension of works, especially for the Lubigi channel.
Kitabire added that the project is estimated to have 85 kilometres of paved roads within the city at its completion, and that 81.77 kilometres (96.2 per cent) had been constructed as of November 30, 2022. The roads include Kira Road, Makerere Hill Road, Nsalo Road, Kabira, Fairway junction, Mambule, Bakuli-Nankulabye-Kasubi, Makerere University Roads, Lukuli Road, Kulambiro Ring Road, Nakawa-Ntinda Road, John Babiiha, and Windsor Crescent, among others.
Katabire also told the committee that drainage improvement works along Lubigi drainage channel and Nakamiro drainage channel were still on-going with physical progress now standing at 45 per cent and 92 per cent respectively, among others.
But Rushenyi County MP, Naome Kabasharira wondered how such a huge amount of money could be lost in transactional shortfalls. Similarly, Abubaker Kawalya, the Shadow Minister for Kampala demanded a further explanation about the loss – saying that this was money meant for Ugandans.
Jesca Ababiku -the Presidential Affairs Committee chairperson directed the Minister of State for Kampala, Kabuye Kyofatogabye to submit a written write-up to the committee – detailing the loss.