Worker's Strike Stalls Construction of BOU Currency Centre

3205 Views Masaka, Uganda

In short
Julius Ndhala, one of the leaders of the striking workers, says they are concerned because their daily allowances dont come on time yet they have families to take care of. The affected workers earn between Shillings 7000 and 20,000 each day depending on their qualifications and the kind of work they do.

The construction of the Bank of Uganda-BoU currency center in Masaka municipality has stalled following a worker's strike. The more than 30 workers laid down their tools on Friday evening to protest several issues including none payment of their wages and abuse of their rights.
 
 
Bank of Uganda contracted China Railway Group Limited to undertake the construction of the Masaka Currency Centre at the tune of Shillings 50 billion. However, the striking workers including porters, foremen and site engineers accuse China Railway Group Limited of none payment of their wages.
 
In particular, the porters accuse China Railway Group Limited of denying them lunch and medical allowances and abusing them. They accuse their bosses of spitting on them whenever they demand for answers and refusing to give them appointment letters.
 

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Julius Ndhala, one of the leaders of the striking workers, says they are concerned because their daily allowances don't come on time yet they have families to take care of. The affected workers earn between Shillings 7000 and 20,000 each day depending on their qualifications and the kind of work they do. 



Ndhala says he has presented the grievances of the workers to their bosses for resolution.
 

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China Railway Group Limited has refused to comment on the strike. One of the Chinese bosses drove away when the workers attempted to lynch him.



By the time of filing this story, the striking workers had pitched camp at the entrance of the construction site until they are paid.



Two police officers were scene reinforcing the private security guards manning the construction site. The construction of the currency center, which is still at the foundation, has been marred by controversy from the onset.
 

Early this year, a section of Masaka district leaders led by Jude Mbabaali, the LCV Chairman petitioned court protesting the allocation of Golf course land for the construction of the currency center, saying the process was marred by corruption.



They sued Louis Kasekende, the Deputy BOU Governor but court dismissed the suit. Bank of Uganda has not yet commented on the strike by the workers.
 

 

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.