7 September 2018

Uganda: First Urban Expo Kicks Off in Jinja

Jinja — The Vice President, Mr Edward Kiwanuka Ssekandi, on Wednesday opened the first urban expo at the Civil Service College in Jinja Town.

The expo, which runs until Sunday, is aimed at developing secondary cities and rallying its stakeholders, including the business community.

President Museveni, in a speech read by Mr Ssekandi, said government is aware of the big urbanisation pressure exerted on cities and "all will be done to free Kampala from the pressure of land and other urban amenities."

Mr Museveni promised that more 22 markets will be constructed in municipalities across the country..

"I urge boda bodas to set up their own garages and washing bays in order to access government support," he said.

Cities Alliance says about 50 per cent of the world's population lives in urban areas and more than 4,000 cities in the world - mostly in developing countries - have a population exceeding 100,000.

Mr Ssekandi suggested that the expo become rotational so that other regions can also benefit.

The State Minister for Lands, Housing and Urban Development, Mr Isaac Musumba, said: "Uganda is taking the execution of the urban agenda seriously and an amendment Bill that seeks to strengthen financing within the urban settlement will be tabled before Parliament."

Speaking to Daily Monitor on the side-lines of the expo, Jinja mayor Majid Batambuze warned detractors and enemies of Jinja against peddling falsehoods about the city he said was for all.

Without mentioning names, Mr Batambuze said: "A university was supposed to be constructed in Jinja, but you fought it and it was taken to Busitema.A Coca-Cola plant was supposed to be operating from here in Jinja, but you too fought it and it was taken to Namanve [in Mukono District]."

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