Earlier this year, the Electrical Regulatory Authority (ERA) announced that government has received a license application from South African company Bonang Power and Energy Pty (Ltd) to construct a hydropower dam at Uhuru Falls in Murchison Falls National Park.
The announcement raised a lot of dust and concern from the general public led by environmentalists, conservationists, tour operators and other stakeholders.
Due to this, the government retracted on the proposal and where Minister for Tourism Ephraim Kamuntu confirmed government’s position by saying that constructing a dam on Murchison Falls would affect the scenery, ecosystem and subsequently tourism.
Months later, government has changed plans and resumed plans to construct a power dam along Uhuru falls, in Murchison Falls National Park.
During a conference with stakeholders in the wildlife sector yesterday, State Minister for Tourism Godfrey Kiwanda said that government has resurrected the plans of constructing the dam, and Cabinet has already approved a feasibility study to be done to find the possibility of constructing the dam without damaging the environment.
“We should investigate through the implications of the power dam. We have backtracked on an earlier decision where Cabinet had resolved that the feasibility study should not be conducted,” Kiwanda said.
Government says that as Uganda’s economy is getting industrialised, more electricity needs to be added to the national grid to power the industries. The proposed power dam is estimated to produce 360MW of power.