Museveni: British failed to discover oil in 1920s but I did

President Museveni in Bunyoro

President Museveni on Saturday laid a foundation stone at the point where the 1,400km Uganda-Tanzania crude oil pipeline will start. The point is in Kabaale parish, Buseruka Sub-county, Hoima District.

He said the British began oil exploration in the Albertine region in the 1920s and gave up in 1956 when they lost hope and concluded that there was no oil in this place.

Later, in 1986, a group of British companies came and told the president they wanted to give it a shot again and prospect for oil in Bunyoro region.

“However, Uganda had no experts on oil and we lacked requisite knowledge. Always, I do not engage in things I am not knowledgeable about,” he said.

The president therefore sent young professionals who had studied geology and related courses to go abroad and study oil excavation, exploration, extraction etc.

It is this group that came and established that indeed there was oil in the region (Bunyoro).

“That is the NRM method of work; study a problem and deal with it only when you fully understand it. Address issues based on knowledge/understanding, not just talk.”

“That is the brief history of our oil journey. I was therefore pleased to witness the laying of a foundation to transport oil to the world market.”

The president said government is going to build the oil roads in the shortest time (2 years). Local communities will benefit from these roads like the Hoima- Buseruka one.

Also, services like electricity, water and hospitals will be extended to the communities besides the jobs.

“I thank Tanzania for giving us concessions to use the Tanga route for the pipeline. In some areas, they allowed the pipeline to pass through road reserves thus cutting costs of compensation.”

He added: “I also thank the people of Bunyoro for the support, and urge you to cooperate with those building the pipeline, be assured that you will benefit.”