Security Agencies Grill UMEME Officials Over Power Crisis Top story

4395 Views Masaka, Uganda

In short
David Kaboyo, the Rakai RDC tasked the UMEME officials to explain why they have failed to restore power a week after vandals vanished with several transformers from Kasasa and Kyotera town council.

A joint security committee has grilled senior UMEME officials over the escalating power crisis in greater Masaka region. The officials are Duncan Mwesigwa, the Masaka UMEME branch manager, Moses Kisakye, the Integrity Manager UMEME, Thomas Tondo, the Umeme regional manager and Chief Operations Officer Florence Nsubuga.
On Wednesday, the officials appeared before a joint security committee comprising of RDCs from districts in greater Masaka region, the regional police commander, Intelligence officials and Masaka Brigade Commander Brigadier Joseph Ssemwanga at Hotel Brovad to explain the week long power crisis. David Kaboyo, the Rakai RDC tasked the UMEME officials to explain why they have failed to restore power a week after vandals vanished with several transformers from Kasasa and Kyotera town council.

Kaboyo also tasked the officials to explain reports pinning UMEME officials for conniving with vandals to sabotage the economy. Brigadier Joseph Ssemwanga, the commandant of Masaka Armored Brigade asked the UMEME to explain why they don’t notify security about planned loading shedding. He said that due to power crisis, they have intercepted insurgents smuggling military hardware into the country through Mutukula border post.

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Maxwell Ogwal, the Greater Masaka region Police commander accused Duncan Mwesigwa, the UMEME branch manager of arrogance whenever he called upon to address the power crisis.  Ogwal said despite quelling several power related riots in Masaka and Kyotera town, each time they call Mwesigwa to come and explain the power crisis he never shows up.
In response Duncan Mwesigwa, the Masaka UMEME branch manager apologized for the power crisis but said at time matters get beyond their control. He blamed the power problems in Rakai, Lwengo, Sembabule and other districts on increased vandalism on their installations.
He claimed that vandals target their transformers at night when they are off duty. Mwesigwa cited an example of Rakai where vandals stole several electricity conductors plunging the district into a power crisis. Florence Nsubuga, the UMEME chief Operations officer also apologized for the power mess and asked security agencies to help them fight vandalism.

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Joseph Ssengoza, a resident of Masaka asked UMEME to investigate some of its officials in connection to transformer vandalism.
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Mentioned: umeme

About the author

Edward Bindhe
Bindhe prides himself on being a part of the society he writes about. He believes there is no way a journalist can understand his society unless it considers him a part of it. This is why he is dedicated to investigating the challenges of the "little person."

Bindhe says, "My work reflects the Uganda Radio Network unique approach to news." Not many Ugandan journalists would consider or even notice the re-emergence of Water Hyacinth on a lake. Bindhe does.

Truant children will attract Bindhe's attention until he gets to the bottom of their truancy: poverty and the need to work to earn bread for their families. These are the kinds of stories Bindhe is often after.

Edward Bindhe is the Masaka URN bureau chief. Rakai, Lwengo, Lyantonde, Kalangala, Mpigi, Kalungu, Bukomansimbi and Sembabule districts fall under his docket. He has been a URN staff member since 2009.

A Mass Communication graduate from Uganda Christian University, Bindhe started practising journalism in 2008 as a reporter for Radio Buddu in Masaka district.