Entebbe | RedPepper Digital – The opposition Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) has accused the government of charging exorbitant road tolls for the use of the Entebbe express highway.
According to the FDC spokesperson, whereas the loan for the road has to be paid through the tolling system, the fees set by the government are high.
The road fees structure was released on November 2 by the Ministry of Works and transport at Kajjansi Toll Plaza during an engagement.
“The Entebbe express highway cost Uganda taxpayers to a tune of USD476Million. Out of this, USD350Million is a loan from Exim Bank of China at a 2% annual interest,” John Kikonyogo, the FDC deputy spokesperson, said at a press conference on Monday, 08 November 2021.
This makes it the most expensive road in the whole world. We also understand that the loan has to be paid back through the road tolling system, but the figure they have charged for vehicles to use the road is too high for our ordinary citizens,” he added.
According to the toll fees, motorcycles will be required to pay Shs3,000 per route, light vehicles will pay Shs5,000 per passage while medium goods vehicles (2-3 axles) shall pay Shs10,000 per passage.
Large goods vehicles and buses (45) shall pay Shs15,000 per passage and Large good vehicles (6 or More axles) Shs18,000.
The Minister of Works and Transport Gerald Edward Katumba Wamala said that “There are only three categories of people who will be exempted from paying tolls which are the presidential convoy and emergency vehicles like ambulance and fire brigade vehicles. The rest of the road users will be expected to pay,”.
“The Government is busy charging Ugandans exorbitantly yet they are paying the former Vice President and Prime Minister double salaries, one as a former Prime Minister/Vice President and another as Presidential Advisor. If the President had wanted them to continue advising, then he shouldn’t have reshuffled them,” Kikonyogo further exclaimed
“We, therefore, advise that the figure be reduced if Government is to recover the money and the citizens continue using the road,” he added.
French firm EGIS has been contracted to collect the toll fees of the 25-kilometre section of the road between Busega and Mpala interchanges and a 1.2-kilometre section on Munyonyo spur.
The highway has three interchanges at Busega, Kajjansi and Abayita Ababiri, connecting to various trading centres, and has 19 overpass bridges and 17 underpasses for local people to access their properties along and around the road.
Implementation of the road toll will be a requirement starting January 2022 as per the Ministry communication.