Blog by Simon Kayiwa, youth documenter Makindye;
Drainage channels waiting for construction without compensation.
Like the trend in African cities and Towns, In Uganda slum settlements still face poor road access and drainage systems but government and other partners in community development are fighting tooth and nail out to curb the effect of the challenge. The latest good news from the forum shows that Communities in Makindye division are to benefit from the incoming KCCA projects that are in queue for construction and renovation before the end of this year as revealed by the technical Engineering wing during the forum executive meeting, which was conducted from the division headquarters in Makindye on the 29th of April 2016.
While speaking to the forum and the invited parties, the division Engineer from physical planning and architecture department said, over 7 drainage channels and 10 community roads in Makindye region are to be reconstructed with funds from the Uganda governmentand WorldBank.
Robert Mugamba, the Municipal Engineer, mentioned Kansanga Water channel that passes via areas of Nkere,Nabisaalu,Nsambya Kirombe to Kansanga, Kayembe water channel that pass via Mugerwa's church, St Bendicto water Chanel all Connecting to the main kansanga channel which the world bank is to fund and Budongo drainage Chanel in Salaama. Roads for re construction includes Ssebanakita road, Kanisa road in Salaama, Church road in Kibuye II, Police road in Kisugu,Ssebo green in Bukasa,Nabutiiti in Kansanga, Kawuku in Gaba, Kiruddu and Sserwaniko in Luwafu
Houses seen marked along Kansanga drainage channel that are to be compensated by world bank.
Residents occupying all these areas where expansion is due will be evacuated without compensation except those around Kansanga Chanel which project has been funded by World Bank
To reveal this, Robert in the seat of the physical planning department in the division had been called up to enlighten the forum how the department does its work and also answer other inquiries of the public directed to his wing.
It’s worth noting that the idea of forums is to link communities and their issues to the authority and besides as put forward by Mrs. Kyewalynga Rebecca secretary in the office of town clerk during this meeting, every resident has a right to seek for information from any department at the division whenever needed.
There were worries in the reactions concerning earmarked land evictions in different parts of Makindye but particularly in Nabisaalu, Nkere and Nabisaalu (Kansanga water channel), there was also raised issue about the relationship between local leaders and the KCCA wing when introducing public projects. The president of the forum said most of the work done by the division has been credited to individuals at the expense of KCCA and this leaves most of KCCA efforts unnoticed. He mentioned the trench being constructed in Luwafu zone which majority of the villagers believe it’s being financed by one estate developer names withheld.
Engineer said it’s true the division has to work hand in hand with local leaders and other parties like MDF before and during these projects but at times they find it difficult considering the fact that they are only two people in this office.
If this is done as proposed by the forum and as per Engineer believes, proper inspection of these projects becomes a sure deal as the Community will pick interest to watch over what they know it’s their tax benefit.
A moment captured during a hot discussion amidst the meeting.
It's was an informal platform on which ideas from; the Academia, authorities, Community, Community Based Organizations (CBOs) representatives busted out from each corner of the meeting room to shoot community woes for two hours. There were Different opinions from parties attached to different responsibilities with one goal of uplifting the society, although their opinions seemed to conflict at a point in time, the meeting remained calm and well controlled.
Blog: by Simon Kayiwa documenter Makindye;
It is not only in Buganda but everywhere that people say, sleep is the sweetest thing but when “Sagala agalamidde”(translated as i do not want those lying down) the early special morning drum beats no one was (is) expected to stay down. It’s awake up beat of sanitation concern calling up all community members regardless of sex, status and age to stand up for healthy communal work (bulungi bwansi) It is a culture and one of the vital norms the Buganda kingdom has maintained for centuries and its annually celebrated every March in Buganda. When the cultural drum is sounded you just know culture is to meet public health.
This time residents of Makindye from the five parishes mobilized by village chiefs that have been recently appointed by Buganda kingdom, all participated in the exercise from their respective communities.
In Katwe, a slum zone where Simon joined a group of 52 volunteers that had moved around almost all Kampala divisions in what was termed as bulungi bwansi week an exercise that kicked off at 9 am around Mukisa medical clinic where Omutongole wakabaka (village chief) on health Tteefe Musisi enlightened residents on the importance of this day and its place in the history of the kingdom which is quiet amazing that it would be a pretty mistake not to quote his entire remarks.
He said "It was not by luck that our ancestors lived longer but it is because they treated environment and sanitation with highest concern, in their pots they kept their drinking water, it was a disgrace for a home to lack a toilet hence public health was everybody’s first concern. The saying that wealth is health was real, they mastered it because a good life starts from a healthy environment and this is why they accumulated more wealth than what we see now days. I urge you people where falls liter deserves a broom and he who lives in a clean environment lives a good life. Lets do this with love for our kingdom and Uganda the country at general. This started long ago; it has started today and its starts now."
No sooner had he concluded his remarks than the residents’ grabbed brooms and spades to make their efforts count on such a day.
The exercise ended at 12pm. It was a very long day that left me exhausted but my great thanks goes to the Buganda kingdom, residents for being cooperative and the community radio (Bipiira "fm") for mobilizing the community towards and during this day. I strongly stand on the words of Omutongole Wakabaka as quoted above. The society has changed and there is no other sagala agalamidde than this message. I therefore encourage members of the slum dwellers federation to live by this message to awake the society and build strong communities.