By Namugerwa Martha
Ugandan government through Southern Gauge Railway (SGR) project has just confirmed that Uganda’s railway will be electric instead of diesel like that of Kenya.
Head of SGR Kasingye Kyamugambi, while at Golf Course Hotel in Kampala said that Uganda was going electric right from the onset of constructing the railway rather than diesel like that Kenyans.
“We have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the contractor “our contractor and the Kenyan contractor are sisters” to use electricity because in operation and maintenance electric locomotives are cheaper than diesel and they have high power,” Kyamugambi said.
He added that the challenge that Uganda has with electricity will be tackled with the Bujagali and Isimba power dams which are going to be providing enough power to run the trains without short falls.
“We agreed that once you get to Malaba you switch the locomotive from electric to diesel actually there will be some few kilometers of electricity in Malaba (Kenya) we instituted railway levies in all the countries,” Kyamugambi added.
However, Kyamugambi said that land acquisition is a real challenge and to him is the number one risk due to the laws concerning land acquisition in the country, adding that also misinformation about the project has been a challenge especially on the social media whereas you can’t do much about the people who post false information yet without railways Uganda cannot industrialize.