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Tuesday,August 11,2020 05:17 AM

Anomalies Found In City Square Project

By Vision Reporter

Added 18th December 2001 03:00 AM

KAMPALA Town Clerk Gordon Mwesigye’s testimony before the commission of inquiry into the planned re-development of City Square yesterday exposed several inconsistencies in the project.

KAMPALA Town Clerk Gordon Mwesigye’s testimony before the commission of inquiry into the planned re-development of City Square yesterday exposed several inconsistencies in the project.

By Hamis Kaheru KAMPALA Town Clerk Gordon Mwesigye’s testimony before the commission of inquiry into the planned re-development of City Square yesterday exposed several inconsistencies in the project. Mwesigye told the commission that the idea of constructing the planned underground shopping complex was conceived by the Mayor, John Ssebaana Kizito. But commission chairman Lt. Col. Christopher Mudoola read to him minutes of the KCC executive committee on May 3, 2000 where it was recorded that Yudaya International, owned by tycoon Hassan Basajjabalaba, initiated the idea. The commission’s lead counsel, Mrs. Lydia Obbo, wondered why the same company which sold the idea to KCC later surfaced again to bid for the tender to construct and manage the shopping centre. On why Yudaya International established contacts with KCC before the tendering process, Mwesigye said nobody could stop businessmen from soliciting for work. Obbo said the three companies which participated in the bidding process were run by the same group of people. She questioned asked why KCC violated the rule forbidding bidders to bid more than once. Mwesigye said KCC had no means of screening prospective bidders. He said KCC could not re-advertise the tender after Yudaya International emerged the sole successful bidder because there was no law forbidding awarding of a tender to a sole bidder who met conditions of the tender. The commission also asked why there was no bidding for the tender to draw up the sketch of the project before Infrastructure Design Forum was contracted to do the job. Mwesigye said KCC lacked an in-house architect to draw up guidelines to use in the tendering process. The commission had a letter from KCC indicating that the complex would have 150 specialised house units for airline offices, tourist shops and curios with 100 parking spaces, but Basajjabalaba had said earlier that he would construct 400 lock-up shops selling general merchandise. When asked why KCC wrote an offer letter to Yudaya International and accepted part payment before sorting out some of the issues, Mwesigye said KCC wanted to show seriousness to proceed with the project. He said KCC would hire the parking slots to customers of the neighbouring banks and the public but the commission wondered what would happen if the tenants booked all slots on monthly basis. Mwesigye said KCC was not sure whether it would lease only underground land to Yudaya International or the surface of the City Square as well. He admitted that the tender was awarded without an environment impact assessment report required by law. Ends

Anomalies Found In City Square Project

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