New Vision (Kampala)

30 July 2012

Uganda: 1.6 Million Housing Units in Uganda Uninhabitable

Uganda is facing a national housing backlog of about 1.6million substandard houses and structures that are not appropriate for human habitation.

According to the minister for lands, housing and urban development Daudi Migereko, out of the 1.6million housing units, 211,000 units should be in the urban areas and 1.2million units in the rural areas.

"To address the negative effects that will arise as a result of this situation, government partnering with individuals, civil society organizations and private sector to address the backlog," said Migereko.

Migereko made the remarks while addressing journalists at Media center Kampala ahead of the annual 10th construction and interior exhibition slated for August 2, and 4th at Lugogo UMA show ground.

He said the ministry of lands has revised the housing policy to ensure that it takes into consideration the current socio economic changes in the housing sector.

"In order to improve the conditions in slums in the country, government is entering into negotiations for partnering with land owners, tenants and developers so as to reduce the development of slums.

This venture will include land sharing, selling, leasing and cost sharing for development," Migereko explained.

Migereko noted that the ministry would promote the establishment of housing cooperatives so as to enable the cooperators access decent housing as a way of addressing housing conditions for low and middle income earners.

He added that government was in the process of developing a housing estates development and management policy and an urban development policy to encourage development of orderly housing estates and urban development.

"Government is operationalizing the condominium property law to ensure optimal usage of land by encouraging high rise construction in the spirit of saving land due to the high growing population rate," he said.

Uganda is urbanizing at a high rate of about 5.6% annually and has a high population growth rate which stands at 3.4 %.

It is projected that by the year 2020, Uganda's population will have increased to around 42,000,000 people.

The director for Housing Agnes Kadama said the ministry was planning to redevelop all slum areas to accommodate all income earners.

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