By Max Patrick Ocaido
Minister of State for Kampala Capital City Authority, Benny Namugwanya has blamed a section of politicians for causing floods in Kampala City through illegal developments.
Namugwanya who was on Tuesday presenting a statement on the state of flooding in Kampala City and its suburbs said that some stubborn political leaders continue to interfere with KCCA policies on land settlement.
In her statement, the KCCA minister said that the major causes of flooding in Kampala are; Illegal developments and encroachments on drainage reserves, filling of wetlands and low-lying areas of flood plains with soil, poor solid waste management practices by communities and inadequate drainage infrastructure. “There are members even in his House who interfere with policies, someone calls you and says I want to construct my house but I don’t want to go through the normal land approval process. When we try to bring order in the city we are not allowed to implement the policies. People are building on wetlands,” Namugwanya said.
In her report, Namugwanya cited former Rubaga South MP Ken Lukyamuzi as one of the culprits and vowed to give the names of other MPs and politicians to the office of the Speaker who have settled on wetlands, thus causing floods in the city. Among the key flood prone areas include; Ntinda Industrial Area, Kyambogo, Banda Moil Petrol Station, Banda Petrol, Nabweru road next to Kawempe division, Lumas Road Kanyanya and Kawaala. Minister Namugwanya said that eight people are believed to have lost their lives in the areas of Kikajjo, Lubowa and Lufuka all located in Masajja and Bunamwaya divisions and according to relief Agencies, over 500 households were affected by the floods of 26th May 2019.
She said that her ministry has a new Kampala Drainage Master Plan which was completed in Dec 2017 and entails details of all flow construction in the Kampala drainage system. The master plan also recommends structural measures such as construction of new drains and crossings.
The MPs were however not satisfied with the minister’s submission on how to address Kampala floods saying there is a lot of laxity in the fully fledged ministry.
Kampala Woman MP Nabilah Naggayi Sempala proposed that KCCA involves local leaders to address management of floods in Kampala and its suburbs, while Beti Nambooze (Mukono Municipality) blamed the minister of not doing enough to address the challenge of floods.
Meanwhile, Namugwanya has said in the new FY 2019/20, KCCA will be collecting garbage free of charge from informal settlement, however, people in upscale of Kampala will continue paying for garage collection.