Government plans to contruct 6000 houses for low income earners in seven districts.
The districts are, Wakiso (1500 units), Lira (1000), Arua (500), Mbarara (500), Jinja (1500), Kabale (500) and Soroti (500). Some houses are already being constructed in Tororo.
Sources said that the project estimated to cost $250m (about sh641b) will be financed by the Exim Bank of India and implemented in a phased period of five years.
During a meeting between the ministry of Lands officials and MPs on Infrastructure committee, lands minister, Daudi Migereko said the one, two and three-bedroomed houses will be constructed through public-private partnership. However, he did provide the project details.
Although the ministry of lands is expected to provide the land, the Project will be managed by National Housing and Construction Corporation.
The ministry, Migereko said intends to engage in mass production by building houses in large quantities at low cost per unit to cater for the low income earners, who comprise the greatest proportion of the population.
State minister for urban planning, Rose Najjemba said plans are under way to provide affordable houses to upgrade slums in the urban centers.
Although there is no money allocated to the project in the national Budget, Migereko said, the construction will start immediately the construction partners are identified. He said the ministry was in the process of identifying a partner and the financiers.
"The proposal is to start with the highly populated urban towns and then spread to other districts as more resources come in. currently, we are working with multilateral financiers to get the required money," he said.
Migereko explained that the ministry came up with the project after realizing the serious need for low income houses in the country especially in urban centers.
Statistics from the Ministry indicate that Uganda has a shortage of over 1.6 million housing units, with Kampala district alone, having a deficit of over 100, 000 housing units.
The situation is likely to worsen as the country's population in urban centers grows to over 5.6% annually in urban centers.
Migereko said the ministry also has plans to construct houses for medical workers and teachers.
But MPs asked the minister to explain the criteria used to identify the beneficiary towns.
"We know very well that the problem of housing is not in urban area. The real challenge is in hard to reach areas like Moroto. Why is it not in the group?" Simon Eleper asked.
MP Patrick Amuriat doubted whether the teachers and health workers would afford to pay back the mortgage given their low salary income.
The MPs also expressed concern that the owners could easily re-sell the houses due to lack of money to pay off the loans.