Deogratius Kiyingi, the Bukomansimbi county MP has come under fire from residents for allegedly frustrating a water project worth UGX 2.5 billion.
The water project is meant to address the water crisis in Misanvu and Buyoga trading centers.
Early last year, the Minister of Water and Environment intervened to address the persistent water problem in both trading center.
As the community contribution, the ministry asked residents to allocate land to host the project, which is expected to serve 15,000 people.
Several residents including Buyoga Catholic Parish offered free land to host the water plant. Francis Musoke, the Kibinge Sub County Social services secretary says despite the fact that several residents offered free land; Kiyingi bought land from his chief campaigner Ali Musesera Kiyoka valley in Kibinge Sub County for the same project.
He however, says tests carried out on the land showed that it was not suitable for the water project. Emmanuel Muwonge, a resident of Buyoga trading center alleges that Kiyingi rejected the free land given out by Buyoga parish and Sirage Muluya because they are known supporters of his rival Maurice Peter Kagimu, Uganda’s Ambassador to Nigeria.
According to Muwonge, Kiyingi wanted to grab this political opportunity from Kagimu who plans to unseat him come the 2016 polls.
He says although it was clear that, Musesera’s land was dry, Kiyingi stopped Ministry of Water officials from taking the project to another suitable site.
Sirage Muluya and Fr. Dominic Ssengoba of Buyoga say the sites they offered without doubt have water but wonder why they rejected it.
Fr. Ssengoba says at the parish site, they already have a functioning water supply though it lacks capacity to supply all the area.
Sirage Muluya says his farm land in Kiyoka village has underground water. He accuses Kiyingi of conniving with his supporters and Water Ministry officials to block the project from being erected on his land.
As a result of the disagreements, the water ministry has withdrawn some of the machinery it had deployed to set up the water project.
John Musoke, an official for the water ministry in charge of the project told our reporters on phone from Wakiso district that the community has failed to cooperate with them.
He says that they decided to withdraw the machinery and take it to Butenga Sub County, where a similar project is underway.
Musoke says they have sent a team to carry out further hydrological investigations in this community. Kiyingi says he bought land after the water ministry officials told him they had failed to secure land for the project adding that, he committed no crime.
Kiyingi says that although the land wasn’t found suitable, he cannot buy another space. He dismisses as false claims that, he blocked residents from providing alternative land for the project. Jenifer Namuwulya, a resident of Misanvu says they were optimistic that the implementation of this project would address the persistent water crisis in the area.
She explains that they walk several kilometers to look for water. Namuwulya says they are now buying a 20 liter jerrycan of water at UGX 700 from vendors.