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Construction of Ayago hydro power still hangs in balance

FILE PHOTO: President Yoweri Museveni

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The construction of the 840 Mega Watts Hydroelectric Power Plant on Victoria Nile in Ayaygo in Nwoya district still hangs in balance. Government signed an agreement with Mapa, a Turkish Construction firm to construct the dam in 2013 at the tune of US $1.970 billion.

The same year government awarded the contract to China Gezhouba Group but suspended the project in 2017 due to financial constraint. On Thursday, President Yoweri Museveni announced that government cannot fund the project because it intends to construct a railway line in the country.

He said government is still waiting for an investor to undertake the construction of the dam since it has no money. Museveni was addressing journalists at the State Lodge in the 4th Division Army barracks. The project is under the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development (MoED).

It involves the construction of a hydroelectric power plant that will be developed in two phases as Ayago North and Ayago South. To be constructed is a powerhouse and substation, installation of turbines, generators and transformers and the laying of transmission lines.

Uganda Electricity Generation Company Limited (UEGCL) has been appointed by MoED as the implementing agency. Japan Government through the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) in collaboration with the Government of Uganda in 2008 started preparations for environmental impact assessments and International bidding for a contractor.

One constructed, Ayago becomes the biggest power station in Uganda after the 650 MW in Karuma dam in Kiryandongo district and 180 MW Bujagali in Jinja district.

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