BY BRIGHT NIWAHA
Works on the construction of Uganda Christian University main campus roads has begun.
The work was commissioned on April 19 at Allan Galpin Health Centre by the University Vice Chancellor, Dr John Senyonyi.
This marks the beginning of paving, construction, and rehabilitation of roads, paths and parking space within the university. This will improve its beauty and put an end to the dusty and muddy roads and pathways during the dry and wet season.
The current road network is about 3km. One and a half kilometres will be worked on in what Dr John Senyonyi called ‘the first phase’. It includes Suubi Road, Sanyu Road, Library Rise, Alpha Road, Ascent to Agape Road, Access to Junction Road, and Football Field Access.
Upgrading of roads in campus is part of within the 2012-2018 Strategic Plan, part as of the University Master Plan. Every semester, students pay a development fund of Shs50,000, part of which is allocated towards this development.
The contracted company for the roadworks is Stirling Civil Engineering Limited, a company based in Uganda. It has worked on several construction projects in the country like Namugongo Road, Mpologoma (Budumba) Railway Bridge, upgrading of Kampala- Gayaza road, among others.
Senyonyi said the start of the project has taken long for a very simple reason: roads are very expensive, and quite often people have failed to realise that the cost is prohibitive.
The university has always had many contending priorities which had made it impossible for it to immediately start on the roads as much as there is need to cover them.
“There is dust when it is sunny and dry as well as mud when it is raining. Once we start, it will give us the commitment to continue working on the roads and ensure that UCU stands up to its quality as a university,” Senyonyi said.
Mr Rajendra Prasad, the Regional Finance Officer who represented the contractor at the commissioning, promised to deliver the good quality and standardised product in time.
“I hope we will meet your expectations at the end of the project and look forward to working on long term basis to complete the roads as planned by the university,” Rajendra said.
The project has a budget of about Shs1.5 billion and the down payment of over Shs800 million has already been paid as the work starts.
According to a statement released on the community mail by the Deputy Vice Chancellor Development and External Relations, Mr David Mugawe, the road construction that started on April 19 is set to end in August 2017.
“A lot of work has to be done first to clear, grab, establish the roads alignment, establish the base, work on the drainage channels, among others, before the asphalt concrete or what many people call tarmac is laid,” Mugawe said.
The university administration at the moment thinks that it can just work on over 1.5km road network, covering only those areas that are critical especially where dust is likely to spoil the computers and other sensitive machinery of the institution.