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East African roads authorities lay plans to work together

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Top roads authority officials from the East African region have held a meeting in Kampala to plan ways of working together. PHOTOS UNRA

A first meeting in Kampala of  Chief Executives of East African roads authorities is seen as a first step to collaborative efforts in building and strengthening infrastructure in the region.

“UNRA is seeking collaboration with other roads authorities in the region. Our coming together will put us at a level where we can negotiate for support,” said host, Uganda National Roads Authority Executive Director Allen Kagina.

“I believe that we can turn our challenges into great opportunities,” Kagina stressed as Uganda today hosted  roads authority chiefs from Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda and Ethiopia.

“We want to benchmark and pick from your long experience in our area of work. We’re going to be able to exchange staff and learn from each other.”

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Uganda’s Kagina (top), Eng.Peter Mundinia of Kenya and Patrick Mfugale of Tanzania

Kagina, who was brought in last year to revive UNRA that had been hit by corruption scandals as revealed in a recent commission of inquiry,  said the inaugural Kampala meeting will help Uganda address some of the issues they face.

“There are fraudulent practices in procurement. If there’s any reason for our collaboration then this is one of them,” she told the delegates, adding, “Our coming together couldn’t be more timely.This foundation will determine our strength.”

There were several presentations, including from Eng. Patrick Mfugale, Chief Executive Officer Tanzania Roads Authority and Eng.Peter Mundinia, the Director General of their National Highways Authority

“Our roads are actually good and users take advantage. Sometimes you think we’re only CEOs of carnage,” Eng. Mfugale said as he shared the challenges Tanzania Roads Authority faces .

 

UNRA said the purpose of the meeting at Serena Hotel  “is to seek collaboration with other roads authorities in the region to establish a platform for information exchange, sharing of experiences and competencies, and to foster cooperation in the area of road infrastructure and ultimately spur economic growth in the region.”

” This can only be done successfully if the roads authorities work collaboratively to formulate and implement holistic strategic plans taking into account the region’s needs,” said UNRA in a statement.

“Collaboration will create room for sharing of information and lessons, as well as increase the profiles of these authorities and the bargaining power for resources for national and regionally supported programs. It will also introduce comparativeness which is a basis for measuring performance in a business environment. This will ultimately result in better service delivery to the public, our primary objective.”

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Meeting in progress. PHOTO VIA @TheJuneKid

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editor@independent.co.ug

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