Mbarara illegal kiosk structures given ultimatum, owners in Panic

Mbarara illegal kiosk structures given ultimatum, owners in Panic

Amos Tayebwa
Mbarara City South Division Council have passed a resolution against the illegal structures, this affects most the kiosk structures that were  illegally constructed in Mbarara City.
During the recent Council meeting, a resolution was passed that effective 1st January 2024 no any illegal kiosk structure remain standing in the Town  Center of Mbarara City. Kiosk owners were given ultimatum up to 31st December 2023 to have removed their structures before they are evicted or demolished forcefully. This policy is going to be implemented mainly in Mbarara City South and entire Mbarara City.
Basing on this resolution, the Kiosk owners have been given notices and advised to start removing their kiosks before this month ends. It should be noted that failure to comply, Council as an authority will deploy the enforcement team to remove them at the owners expense.
Didas Muhanguzi, Town Clerk Mbarara City South Div.
Didas Muhanguzi, the Mbarara City South Division Town Clerk has revealed that Mbarara is facing most challenge of illegal structures that have increased in some areas of the Town center resulting into slums.
Speaking to this website, Muhanguzi said that Council has the mandate on how Lands in Mbarara City can be developed although they are owned by Individuals. He said that owners of these lands have misused them putting illegal structures that are not allowed.
“The level that we have reached as Mbarara, we need an organized City. We have come up with a police to remove illegal structures from our town especially kiosks. I want to inform all Kiosks Owners that you are requested to start removing those kiosks before we enforce. This should be done before 31st December 2023. Beyond that date, as Council we shall come and remove those kiosks at the owners expense, this includes other structures that were constructed without councils permission or authority” said Muhanguzi.
“We are running notices through radios and other median platforms. But even if we  don’t write to them as longas  it’s an illegal structure, as longs as you constructed that illegal structure without authority from council you don’t even deserve a notice.  If you know you built an illegal structure without writing to the council, council will remove without writing to you also” said Muhanguzi.
Business taking place in some Kiosk structures opposite Baguma Hotel
Assey Abirebe, the Mbarara City Town Clerk said that as City Council the resolution has been passed earlier to remove all illegal structures from town effective 1st January 2024.
“Actually, what the Divisions are doing they are operationalizing what the City Council passed. And this should be done in both divisions. But we are all going to work as a team to make sure we remove all the kiosks from town. The ultimatum is January, come January all the kiosks should be removed. We have already engaged with security because this requires a lot of enforcement and a joint operation,  even including UMEME and National water because some of them are connected with power and normally when we are removing them we move with officers from UMEME and also from National water” said Abirebe.
A number of illegal structures especially Kiosks are located in kijungu area, Bucunku road, Bishop Macklista road opposite Baguma Hotel and opposite Human Rights Commission offices. Most of these kiosks are owned by unknown people, however it is alleged that most of them are owned by some politicians and other leaders from Mbarara City Council. Others are owned by top business people in town who are too close to some leaders in the Council.
It is anticipated that by removing these kiosks, a number of businesses are going to collapse especially bars owners and shops owners who are have been for a long time operating from these structures are going to be affected..
 Mbarara is considered to be  among the  fastest growing Cities in East Africa since it was elevated to a City Status. A number of investments have started coming in, however the existence of mushrooming  illegal structures may backslide the development of this City.

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