The China Civil Engineering and Construction Corporation (CCECC) withdrew a legal suit filed against government of Uganda so as not to jeopardize future prospects for construction projects in Uganda.
This was revealed by Mr. Zhao Jinhua, the Senior Assistant President of China Railway Construction Corporation Limited (CRCC) in a meeting with the Parliamentary Select Committee on the Standard Gauge Railway, which is led by the Chairperson and Nakifuma County MP Hon. Kafeero Ssekitoleko. The meeting took place at the CRCC headquarters in Beijing, China on Tuesday, 27th January 2015.
The China Civil and Engineering and Construction Corporation is a subsidiary company of China Railway Construction Corporation Limited.
Mr. Jinhua explained that the Branch Manager of CCECC did not report back on the Memorandum of Understanding that had been signed for the Eastern and Northern routes, hence and the subsequent court case.
He added that after receiving a letter from the Ugandan Minister for Works about the suit, they asked their representatives to withdraw the case.
“The legal suit was occasioned after the Memorandum of Understanding was cancelled but since we wanted to cooperate with the government on future proposals, we decided to withdraw the case,” he said.
The Chairperson of the Committee Hon. Ssekitoleko wondered why the CRCC, as a parent company, did not take interest in the Ugandan Standard Gauge Railway and sought to know the status of CRCC’s ownership of CCECC.
“Why didn’t CRCC pick interest in the projects in Uganda amid all the controversy and leave it to CCECC?” Ssekitoleko pondered.
Mr. Zhao Jinhua clarified that CCECC is mainly for their overseas business and is wholly owned by the CRCC.
Later in the day, the Committee held a separate meeting with the management of China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation (CCECC) whose President Mr. Zhou Tianxiang said that they attach a lot of importance to the market in Uganda and would like to be part of the infrastructural development.
“We would like to participate as a company that is involved in railway construction, and get to involved in the development of Uganda,” he said.
He added that they are ready to do preliminary infrastructural designs and have already set up a team to study railway planning in Africa.
“There is need to connect all railways into a network to achieve tangible results,” he added.
Tianxiang also reaffirmed the need to use local resources, provide training of local staff and carry out cooperation with local companies.
The Chairman, Hon. Ssekitoleko, said that the Committee was now certain of the status of CCECC and its capacity to carry out infrastructural development as evidenced by the works carried out in several parts of the world.
“We now know your legal and commercial status, your networks within China and elsewhere and the fact that you consider local peoples’ needs. There is no doubt that you are the kind of people we would like to work with,” Hon. Ssekitoleko stated.
The Committee will on Wednesday 28th January 2015 travel to Guangzhou to conduct site visits of the railway works being carried out by the companies, before returning to Uganda on 31st January 2015.