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Arua Central Market Nears Completion, Project Handover Set for October



After months of anticipation, at long last October 2020 has been scheduled as the end date for the completion of the New Arua Central Market.

The market set to accommodate at least 4,600 vendors in Arua Municipality commenced in February 18 2018 under the aegis of the Markets and Agricultural Trade Improvement Project initiative.

Against the back drop of a devastating Covid-19 Pandemic, there have been fears within the general public that the 34.9 billion shillings undertaking might trudge.

However, speaking to ChimpReports on August 24, 2020, Hudson Mayombwe, the Project’s Quality Control Manager negated this apprehension saying all is going according to plan.

“Right now we have reached around 90% of the works because as you can see they are doing painting works and the other works that are remaining is the final cleaning. By October, we need to deliver this project,” Mayombwe said.

Hudson Mayombwe the Quality Assurance Manager at Arua Central Market

Nevertheless, he intimated that construction works were slowed by works on a nearby road and diminutive hiccups at the start.

“We had a road called Duka road that was under construction. And this being the main access, we used to have our mixers down here so we couldn’t go the other side,” Mayombwe elaborated.

“Right now we know that we also have covid-19 in the country. So hard wares were closed, transportation was an issue whereby you had some workers who had travelled to see their families in Kampala but couldn’t travel back,” he stated further.

Considering its strategic position, the market situated in Arua City is projected to facilitate inter-state trade between Uganda and the neighbouring Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Part of the stalls at Arua Central Market that have been completed.

According to a 2018 Uganda Bureau of Statistics (UBOS) report, Uganda’s monitored exports to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) in 2017 were valued at 3,450,681,651 Dollars.

On the other hand, the value of imports from DRC handled through core trade infrastructure was worth 5,676,566, 914 Dollars.

To leverage on this potential, the Government of Uganda (GOU) has moved to accelerate provision of water services within the border town.

A water treatment pool at Dadamu

Contrary to the past, the area now boasts of the 3.5 million water storage facility at Girigiri and two waste treatment plants in Dadamu sub-county among many other facilities.

“I can’t estimate but the population of Arua is close to 700,000 people. Those accessing water might be less, but a good percentage of that, we can take like 60%,” says Sowedi Kibuuka a site surveyor.


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Another blow as Judge throws out Kiggundu’s lawyer Muwema



When court sat on Friday to hear the Kiggundu’s application to stop independent audit, he did not have a written application, and Justice Henry Adonyo instead ordered the plaintiff’s lawyer Fred Muwema to go make a written application seeking court to dismiss the audit and return to court on September 30 for a hearing of the application. But this adds more pressure on Kiggundu who is choking with the loans.

On 31 August, the judge ordered the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Uganda (ICPAU) to carry out and independent audit into the accounts of the businessman and financial statements exchanged between the two parties, and present a report to court.

When asked by journalists why he has filed for an application seeking dismissal of the audit, Fred Muwema had this to say. “We are saying that let the validity and legality of those credit facilities (loans) be decided first before you can audit” He said.

The ruling on the application of the main suit to determine whether the businessman owes loan arrears to the bank is set for 5th October 2020, after which a date for hearing of the case will be set.


Hamis Kiggundu through his companies Ham enterprises and Kiggs International (U) ltd sued DTB branches in Kenya and Uganda for deducting money from his accounts something which the bank contends and said they only acted as per the loan agreement of deducting 30% from Kiggundu’s accounts to recover the credit facilities rendered to him between February 2011 and September 2016

But Court documents filed by the bank in their defense shows that Kiggundu, between February 2011 and September 2016, was granted various credit facilities by the said DTB Banks.

First, via Ham Enterprises Limited, Kiggundu obtained a loan of $6,663,453 and another Sh2.5bn from the DTB (U) to finance his projects in the real estate business.

Later, according to New Vision, he got a facility worth $4.5m through Kiggs International (U) Limited from DTB (K) and mortgaged his properties, which include Plot 328 located at Kawuku on Block 248 Kyadondo, three plots that include 36, 37 and 38 on Folio 1533 Victoria Crescent II situated in Kyadondo and land on Makerere Hill Road on LRV 3716 Folio 10 Plot 923 Block 9.

Documents show that as of January 21, 2020, Kiggundu was in default on payment obligations of $6.298m on the loan facility of $6.663m, as well as sh2.885b on the demand overdraft facility of sh1.5b and the temporary demand overdraft facility of sh1b.

The banks say that Kiggundu was in default on the payment of another $3.662m out of a total loan facility of $4m and another $458,604 on a loan facility of $500,000, as of January 21, 2020.

The DTB consequently served him with a demand notice to either pay up or lose the assets that he submitted as collateral security. The bank threatened to attach a plot on Makerere Hill Road and other prime commercial properties.

Analysts says that Kiggundu’s lawyer is playing delaying tactics aimed at stopping the independent audit as ordered by the court earlier. Kiggundu had wanted court to believe his own audit of loan transactions, but that would amount to injustice to the banks that gave him money-DTB Uganda and DTB Kenya.

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Minister Rukutana charged with attempted murder, remanded




The state minister for Labour, Gender and Economic Development Mwesigwa Rukutana has been remanded to Kyamugorani prison in Mbarara district.

Rukutana appeared before Ntungamo Grade One magistrate Nazifah Namayanja this afternoon from where he was charged with seven offences related to attempted murder, assault, malicious damage, and threatening violence.

Rukutana was captured in a video that went viral on social media showing him grabbing a gun from one of his bodyguards and started shooting at a vehicle belonging to supporters of his political rival Naome Kabasharira. At the time of the incident, Rukutana had just lost the Rushenyi country NRM flag to Kabasharira.

The prosecution alleges that on September 5, 2020, at Kagugu village in Ntungamo district, Rukutana and others still at large assaulted Julius Niwamanya and threatened to kill or injure him together with three others. The others are Stuart Kamukama, Dan Rwibirungi, and Moses Kamukama. 

It is also alleged that Rukutana also willfully and unlawfully damaged a motor vehicle registration number UAR 840X Toyota Rav 4 type which belongs to Moses Muhumuza.

According to the Judiciary public relations officer, Jameson Karemani, Rukutana has not taken a plea of these charges against him since they can only be tried by the chief magistrate who was not in court today.

As a result, the magistrate decided to send him to Kyamugorani, awaiting his return to court on Tuesday.      

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Lira district headquarters closed over COVID-19




Lira district headquarters have been closed after one staff tested positive for COVID-19 last week. 

On Monday morning, district staff were blocked at the gate with only the deputy chief administrative officer, his secretary and the receptionist allowed access to their offices. 

Paul Samuel Mbiiwa, the deputy chief administrative officer says that only heads of department will be allowed at the headquarters while the rest will work from home. He adds that the restriction will help to curb the spread of the virus.

“You see corona is not a joke. We have taken a step at fighting it and that is why you are seeing the staff outside. Even in my office here I do not want people to come if there is anything we can discuss on the phone.”

Francis Okello Olwa, a senior community development officer who doubles as the district spokesperson says that the entire district offices will be fumigated and closed for two days.

Health authorities in the district are planning to take samples from all the staff because they could have interacted with the one who tested positive. Currently, there are 19 COVID-19 patients under treatment at Lira regional referral hospital.     

On Sunday four health workers at the hospital tested positive for COVID-19. Dr Patrick Odongo, a senior medical officer at the hospital also succumbed to the virus.  

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