By Jolly Gwari
National Social Security Fund (NSSF) has unveiled the new NSSF Mbarara City House, a modern complex worth UGX 3.9 billion. The National Social Security Fund has over the years invested in real estate projects in Uganda. Like from Lubowa to Nsimbe, Jinja city house and Mbuya housing project.
Notably, the complex complies of a total built-up area of approximately 1,500 m² and parking capacity of up to 40 vehicles, the Fund’s second real estate development outside Kampala.
The Mbarara City House project is part of the fund’s strategy to diversify its investment portfolio minimizing any risks within its asset classes. According to the fund’s managing director, Richard Byarugaba, the Shs 3.9 billion project will have retail and office space. Notably, NSSF has 7% of its funds invested in real estate.
However, from Mbarara like other housing projects, the fund projects are 20% return annually from the investment. But even as the fund boasts of an Shs 11 trillion asset base, being the largest financial institution in Uganda and the largest pension fund in East Africa, stakeholders feel the law needs to be adjusted fast enough to address particular constraints.
Remarkably, housing in Uganda is one of the constraints government is struggling with, Chris Baryomunsi, the minister of state for Housing said partners providing housing services need to be provided space for quick growth and better development.
This year in April, the government appointed two workers’ representatives to the NSSF Board.
The government had dithered on the move after the Uganda Retirement Benefits and Regulatory Authority (URBRA) had rejected the nominations of Mr. Peter Christopher Werikhe and Stephen Mugole, both members of the National Organization of Trade Unions, to the board.