By Fred Turyakira
The governments of Uganda and Tanzania have agreed to speed up the development of a 10MW hydro-power project.
The project, on River Kagera, is at Kikagati border in Isingiro district. Energy minister Daudi Migereko and his Tanzanian counterpart, William Mganga Ngeleja, held discussions on the project at Kikagati sub-county headquarters.
A Chinese company, Shan Sheng Industry International, was contracted to construct the power station.
Migereko requested Tanzania to offer 100 square meters for a temporary road, allow the use of Kagera Bridge for transporting construction materials and give 4,000 square meters of land for a water retaining dam.
He said the old station was destroyed during the 1979 war during the Idi Amin government.
The minister called for cooperation and urged the community not to steal construction materials.
He said some land owners have often demanded a lot in compensation when electric wires and poles are passed through their land. â€œThis has delayed the supply of power to some areas,â€ Migereko said.
Ngeleja said the project had come at the right time when East Africa is pursuing a federation.
The manager of Shan Sheng, Elaine Kiew, said the cost of the project would double from $12m to $25m due to increased costs of building materials.