Gulu Municipality Plots to Eliminate Slums

4755 Views Gulu, Uganda

In short
Francis Barabanawe, the Municipality town clerk says that since Gulu is striving for a city status, it should get rid of all grass thatched houses in its central Business area.

Gulu municipality Authorities commit to support slum dwellers with plans and building materials that will fit in their capacity to construct habitable shelters.

Francis Barabanawe, the Municipality town clerk says that since Gulu is striving for a city status, it should get rid of all grass thatched houses in its central Business area.

There are over 19 slum settlements in Gulu district, these slums most have grass thatched houses and poor conditioned temporary houses.  Famous slum areas include; Kanyogoga A, Kony Paco, Pece lukung, mad camp, cuk pa cengere, kasubi and Pabbo quarters among others.

Last year the Gulu municipality mayor George Labeja announced plans to raze all slums in the municipality if the dwellers failed to develop decent housing on the land they occupy.

But Barabanawe says the municipality will now allow the over 5000 slum dwellers to construct shelters at affordable rates.  He explains that slum dwellers are not poor but only need to be guided and supported to better their lives.  

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As part of the arrangement, the district will provide brick laying materials and allow them to make bricks within the town provided they use them for construction. The slum dwellers have also been advised to buy at least one iron sheet per month so that at the end of 30 months they could be able to fully complete their housing in support of the municipality.
 
Denis Ayiga, a member of Gulu Municipality development forum and a representative of the slum dwellers federation says that they are currently being empowered by Level settlement Forum to form groups so that they can get support and start saving. He said the slum dwellers will be supported with toilet facilities, water and houses among others.

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Level settlement Forum and Slum dwellers association are expected to empower the slum dwellers in the district so that as the district seeks to get a city status,  the slum dwellers will be able to meet the standards of development like electricity, water and sanitation.

Mary Akot, a 33 year old resident of Kasubi, one of the slum areas in Gulu is optimistic that several of them will have improved lives once they are supported to build their houses.
 
 
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About the author

Alex Otto
“Journalism that changes lives is my goal,” Alex Otto has said on more than one occasion. That is his career’s guiding principle. Has been since he was a radio journalist in the northern Ugandan town of Gulu in 2009.

Otto passionately believes his journalism should bring to the fore the voices of the voiceless like the shooting victims of Apaa. Otto tries in his journalism to ask tough questions to those in positions of authority.

Based in the Kampala bureau, Otto is especially interested in covering agriculture, politics, education, human rights, crime, environment and business. He has reported intensively on the post-conflict situation in northern Uganda.

A URN staff member since 2014, Otto previously worked with The Observer Newspaper from 2012 to 2013 and later the Institute for War and Peace Reporting IWPR based in Gulu.

He was the URN Gulu bureau chief 2014-2016.