President Yoweri Museveni having endorsed a partnership between the government and the Turkish private company Summa to build an international multipurpose sports complex in Lugogo, members of parliament have raised concerns just a week into this new development . They are calling for thorough due diligence before commencing the project. Their concerns stem from past government failures to complete similar sports projects, leading to worries about the potential misuse of taxpayer funds.
President Museveni’s endorsement of the state-of-the-art sports complex in Lugogo has also received mixed reactions from the public, who doubt whether the project will fulfill its promises given previous project failures. Opposition members of parliament, in particular, have expressed varying opinions about the project.
During a recent press conference at parliament, legislators, including Geoffrey Kayemba, the Shadow Minister for Sports, along with Hillary Kiyaga, Joyce Bagala, and Richard Lumu, called for a careful examination of the government’s contract with the investor. They also warned against potential speculators disguising themselves as genuine investors.
Hon. Hillary Kiyaga, known as Dr. Hilderman, advocated for a more inclusive approach to sports infrastructure development, emphasizing the need to consider other regions of the country to avoid giving away responsibility entirely.
Past failed public investment projects, where public land was allocated to fraudulent investors resulting in project delays or cancellations, have fueled concerns.
According to a State House document, Summa construction company’s project manager, Murat Altun, outlined plans for the sports complex, which includes a 15,000-seat multipurpose arena, a smaller 300-seat arena, a 25m x 8 swimming pool, a standard multipurpose pitch, and a 60-person athlete hostel.
It’s worth noting that in 2018, the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) initiated an investigation into the alleged misuse of funds allocated for the construction of the Akii-Bua memorial stadium.