Stalled construction works at Mubende Regional Referral Hospital have been attributed to a high cost of implementation compared to annual budgetary allocations to the facility.
In the 2013/2014 financial year, Mubende hospital signed a two and a half year contract with Ms ACE Consult, to construct a paediatric and surgical ward, pathology department, private wing and an intensive care unit, following its upgrade to a regional referral hospital.
According to Dr. Alex Andema the Hospital Director, a total of shs5.28 billion of the contract cost of shs7.48 billion was paid. This, he adds, is shs1 billion capital development budget per annum over the last five years.
“As a result, a project that was planned to be completed in two and a half years has not been completed,” Dr. Andema said.
Dr. Andema led a team of hospital management officials on Tuesday, 09 July 2019, to appear before the Public Accounts Committee (PAC), to respond to queries raised by the Auditor General in a report for the financial year 2017/2018.
He said that unpaid certificates of work done had accumulated to shs2.4 billion in the financial year 2016/2017 which slowed down the works.
He however, revealed that this has been reduced over the last two years by shs900 million.
Kwania County MP, Hon. Tonny Ayoo was concerned about the growing debt and tasked the hospital management to present the total amount released for the construction when the contract was signed.
“You started a project with shs7.48 billion but because of these delays, it has escalated to shs8 billion. If there is no serious intervention by Parliament, this project is going to continue to cost us more money,” said Ayoo.
The Chairperson PAC, Hon. Nathan Nandala Mafabi (FDC, Budadiri West County) tasked the director and his team to avail the committee with the signed contract indicating the contract sum of the project.
“Tell us how much you have paid; how much is due and how much is remaining so that the contract is completed. Given the circumstances you are in, you need a big boost to complete this project,” said Nandala Mafabi.