Arua District Suspends Construction Works at Police Headquarters Citing Shoddy Work
todayMay 12, 2022
By: Godwin Abedican
The leaders of Arua district on Tuesday may 10th 2022, suspended ongoing construction works at the district police headquarters located at the borders of Alio, Amisi and Tivu villages in Arua district, citing shoddy work and failure by the contractor to hire the locals as laborers in the project. The project funded by Uganda Police headquarters in Kampala was meant to have at least 20 uniport houses constructed as police houses with 16 of them at the District headquarters while the four sub counties in the district would get one each as a police post. The contract for the project was reportedly handed to Merge engineering and Construction Company limited, a local construction company.
In a complaint raised by the members of the three villages, they say they have not been given chances to work as casual laborers in the project something the district leaders say is a wrong practice. Obia Robert who represented the LC1 chairpersons of the three villages says, they are not happy the contractors haven’t been cooperating with them. “We saw some people doing the simple works which we thought should have been given to the locals as a benefit of the project and I was not happy to see that.” he said. According to the female councilor representing vurra Sub County to the district Eyokia Hope, the locals have always been disturbing her office accusing the contractor of hiring manual laborers from Paidha in Zombo district a neighboring district to Arua.
Arua district LC5 Chairperson, Alfred okuonzi criticized the contractor for the action and says they as a district will not allow any work to continue at the site since the contractor had employed up to 14 manual laborers, with only two hand hoes and two spades in the whole site something he says affects the progress of the project. Oceng Godfrey Osborn, Arua resident district commissioner in a bitter phone call made to the construction engineer who was not available at the site during the site visit ordered him to withdraw his workforce. “You cannot bring people from somewhere to work without involving my office and letting my security team know the kind of people you are bringing to the district. I have stopped all activities at the site from going on and let the people from Paidha go back and the local people will take over and a site meeting is needed immediately,” he said partly in the call. The leaders are also demanding that the contractor explains why he was using poor quality bricks that were in broken pieces and without proper shapes for a huge government project.