The Government has kept its promise to give all the district chairpersons new vehicles to enhance the supervisions of government programs.
Handing over the 111 pick-up trucks to the district chiefs on Friday outside Namboole Stadium, Prime Minister Dr Ruhakana Rugunda warned the recipients against misusing the cars.
He reminded them that the vehicles they were about to receive were meant for the office of the district chairpersons.
"I therefore appeal to you to exhibit a high degree of responsibility and care while using them to execute your official duties. You should develop an impeccable culture of maintenance so that these vehicles do not go to waste before they serve their usefulness," he appealed.
He said it's sometimes disappointing and annoying to find fleets of old, rugged abandoned vehicles at several upcountry Government establishments, some of which have very minor defects that can be rectified.
"We need to be more proactive in the way we manage government assets," Rugunda said.
Rugunda's views were echoed by the acting permanent secretary of local government ministry, John Walala.
"I urge the district officials receiving these vehicles to use them effectively for the purpose they have been provided and avoid misusing them," Walala implored.
Francis Kibuuka, the Mubende district chairperson, had complained in the Uganda Local Governments Association conference in 2014 in Jinja about the delay to provide vehicles to district chairpersons.
"The work of MPs is very little on the ground. We are mini-presidents doing a lot of work, so we deserve free vehicles as it is with MPs," Kibuuka said.
Type of vehicles
According to Walala, the vehicles go by the trade name of Mitsubishi L200 GL Brand 4wd Double Cabin.
They were manufactured in 2015 with a four-cycle, water cooled turbo charged engine of 2,500c.c and are built for heavy duty tropical terrain.
Who is a district chairperson?
A district chairman is the political head of the district and chairs the council that appropriates resources in the area.
According to Section 13 of the Local Government Act, the chairman and his executive are empowered to initiate policies for the public welfare, oversee and implement government programmes and council decisions.
The chairman is also empowered to oversee the performance of civil servants, ensure that appropriate committees such as the district service commission, public accounts committee are properly constituted and functioning, and carry out any other duty as authorised by law.
A district chairman receives a monthly salary of sh2m and they are also given free vehicles and fuel.