His Excellency, President Yoweri Museveni has highlighted that the engineering profession plays a pivotal role in advancing the development needs of the country. He said Engineers confront development bottlenecks and challenges such as climate change, traffic jams, energy deficits, water scarcity and over population among others.
The President made the remarks in a speech which was delivered by the Prime Minister, Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda at the 5th Engineers forum organized under the theme “Sustainable Use of Nile Waters -The Engineer’s Perspective” at Hotel Africana on Thursday.
Museveni saluted Ugandan Engineers and their foreign counterparts for being central in the development mission of the country. He said engineers have continuously worked alongside the NRM Government to enhance infrastructure in the country.
“Engineers were central in reclamation of infrastructure immediately NRM assumed power in 1986. They have played key roles in rehabilitating roads, bridges, hospitals, dams and railways among others. We have also relied on them since 2001 to implement projects in oil and gas sectors,” Museveni said.
The President called for equitable sharing of the Nile waters for the benefit of national development, and also tasked the engineers to address the lingering challenges that continue to impede the professionals from delivering quality work.
“The Registration of engineers in Uganda is still small at only 1000 engineers, which is inadequate for national development needs. There are nearly 20,000 non-registered engineers in the field and this could be the cause of so much poor workmanship and shoddy work resulting into collapsing buildings,” The President said.
The President also warned engineers against engaging in corrupt practices to secure contracts, urging that the contracts should be awarded on merit.
He called upon Parliament to expedite the amendment of the Engineers Registration Act,1969 to get rid of masquerades and also increase public confidence in the profession. Museveni pledged government support to the Engineers Registration Board.
The Minister of Works and Transport, Eng. Monica Azuba Ntege, said that there are many development initiatives taking place along River Nile and thus called for equitable use of the R. Nile resources by all countries.
“There are many major projects along the River Nile basin such as water navigation, irrigation, generation of hydro- power electricity among others. The Engineers should therefore view these initiatives as enormous, with dire consequences incase the Nile and its resources are mismanaged among benefiting countries,” Azuba said.
The Chairman of the Engineer’s Registration Board, Eng. Dr. Michael Moses Odongo, highlighted some of board’s the key achievements for the year, which include; signing of a memorandum of understanding with Egyptian Syndicate of Engineers, as well as securing land for the construction of the Board Premises.
The Engineers Registration Board is established under the Engineers Registration Act with an aim of regulating and controlling engineers and their activities within Uganda. It also advises government in relation to the profession.
The ceremony was also attended by the Minister of Energy and Mineral Development, Eng. Muloni Irene, Members of Parliament, delegates from Egypt, DRC, Tanzania and Zanzibar.
Friday, October 26, 2018
BY DOREEN NASASIRA