Kitgum, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | A ten year urban physical development plan for Kitgum municipality is in the final phase of approval at the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development according to municipal officials.
Kitgum municipality with three divisions of Pager, Central and Pandwong last developed it’s physical development plan in 2005 when the entity was still a town council. The new plan has been under development by Peak Partners Ltd for the last year. It is funded by the World Bank through Uganda Support to Municipal Infrastructure Development programme-USMID.
Kitgum Municipal Town Clerk Emmanuel Banya says that a draft physical development plan has already been compiled and displayed for the community, adding that they have since made amendments to it basing on input from the community. Banya says that the draft plan secured a nod from a panel of experts in the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development.
According to Banya, a final draft plan has now been submitted to the physical planning board at the Lands Ministry waiting for a date for their appearance to make the final presentation before the document is approved.
The draft urban physical development plan for the Municipality entails detailed plans on sites for developing institutions, utilities such as the abattoir, the cemetery, and a fire station, industry (Light industry and refueling station), recreational grounds and parking. Others are commercial sites for establishing hotels, local centres, and markets, agriculture like fish farming and urban agriculture, residential areas, tree planting, and wetland demarcation.
Banya says that the development of the physical development plan is necessary for a fast-growing municipality like Kitgum to ease planning, proper security and boosting economic growth.
Banya says with the expiry of the physical development plan developed in 2005, they have been facing hurdles in prosecuting persons who established infrastructure in areas not captured in the development plan.
Once the Urban Physical Development Plan is approved by the government, it will be used for a period of ten years from 2021 to 2031 by the Municipal Council. Kitgum attained a municipality status in the financial year 2015/2016. According to the 2014 National population census, Kitgum municipality has an urban population totaling to 44,604 (21.86 percent).