Expressway Disrupts Businesses in Entebbe

4392 Views Entebbe, Uganda

In short
There is massive disruption to businesses in Entebbe due to roadworks on the Kampala-Entebbe Expressway. Work on the expressway is now reaching Entebbe and as a result hundreds of premises along the way are being pulled down.

There is massive disruption to businesses in Entebbe due to roadworks on the Kampala-Entebbe Expressway.
 
Work on the expressway is now reaching Entebbe and as a result hundreds of premises along the way are being pulled down.
 
The worst affected area is the vibrant township of Abayita Ababiri in Katabi Town Council, especially the stretch from Kitala to Kitubulu.
 
All buildings on the western side of the expressway are being razed down. By Thursday morning most of the buildings have been pulled down, after their owners were compensated by Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA).
 
The development has affected a string of businesses like banks, pharmacies, schools, fuel stations, hotel and lodges, restaurants, bars, furniture sellers, supermarkets and wholesale and retail shops.
 
Other affected businesses include salons, clinics, betting points, video shops and halls, garages, nightclubs, beer and soda depots, sports shops and timber sellers.
 
Also affected adversely are ordinary people, mainly women, operating on the roadside like hawkers, rolex makers, maize and gonja roasters, chips and chicken sellers, among others.
 
A number of families, of those owning homes and those renting, have also been displaced.
 
The Chairperson of Katabi Town Council, Ronald Kalema, says the disruption to businesses and families have been massive, adding that between 15 and 20 percent of businesses and revenues in the town council have been affected.
 
Kalema says the roadworks have affected a key part of the township, noting that hundreds of people, especially young people, have been rendered unemployed with no immediate alternatives for employment.
 
The situation has been exacerbated by the fact that Abayita Ababiri is a one-lane township with few alternative locations.
 
Kalema says they now need to plan the entire town council in order to create room for relocation of businesses.
 
With compensation, some beneficiaries immediately bought land on opposite side of the highway and have or are erecting storied buildings. Spaces on the new buildings are being snapped up instantly due to stiff competition for spaces.
 
Some of the displaced businesses have been lucky to get good alternative locations on the opposite roadside, others in other townships, while others not yet.
 
One displaced bar owner, Michael Waiswa, says the sheer number of displaced businesses and limited spaces has affected most small businesses.
 
Sylvia Atukunda, a former bartender says ever since the bar was razed down two weeks ago she has been rendered jobless.
 
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