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Austrian investor pulls out govt eventure

By Vision Reporter

Added 19th September 2010 03:00 AM

A five-acre industrial plot worth sh115m which the Government bought for the construction of a fruit processing plant in Luweero, is lying idle due to confusion among the implementers.

A five-acre industrial plot worth sh115m which the Government bought for the construction of a fruit processing plant in Luweero, is lying idle due to confusion among the implementers.

By Frederick Kiwanuka

A five-acre industrial plot worth sh115m which the Government bought for the construction of a fruit processing plant in Luweero, is lying idle due to confusion among the implementers.

The confusion comes after the Austrian co-investor, Prisch Karl-Eine Welt, who was supposed to contribute 30% of the project cost, pulled out of the joint venture while the Government has also failed to fulfil its part.

As a result, the plant, ordered to be funded under NAADS in 2008 by President Yoweri Museveni has failed to take off.

The Government in February, 2009 signed a memorandum of understanding with Nature Uganda Co-operative Society (NUCSL), a co-operative entity under the Kasana-Luweero Catholic Diocese to set up the joint venture.

Under the deal, the Government through the finance ministry, was to contribute 70% of project total lost, while NUCSL and the Austrian investor would provide the 30%.

However, NUCSL members said they were unable to raise the 30% after Welt, with whom they had formed the co-operative entity, pulled out for unknown reasons.

According to a follow-up report by a three-man team deployed in Luweero to monitor the progress of the project, sh115,200,000 was released by the Government in February 2009 and was used to buy a five-acre plot of land in Luweero town.

NUCSL then requisitioned the second and final installment of sh588,000,000 but the finance ministry did not honour it, saying it was not possible.

According to the team, NUCSL made a repeat requisition in July last year, which has never been honoured either.

“There has not been any feedback from the finance ministry,” the team observed.
The team noted there was lack of harmonisation of information between the agriculture ministry which is supposed to supervise the implementation of the project and that of finance, which is supposed to fund the project.

According to a presidential directive of April and May 2009, the agriculture ministry would supervise the purchase of equipment.

Austrian investor pulls out govt eventure

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