MPs Applaud NWSC’s Service Delivery Plans, Discuss Payment of Government Arrears and Water For All

In a significant move towards enhancing environmental sustainability and responsible resource management, National Water and Sewerage Corporation engaged in a productive meeting with the Committee on Environment and Natural Resources.

This collaborative effort aims to address critical issues, explore opportunities for improvement, and ensure that the provision of clean water and proper wastewater management aligns with the principles of environmental stewardship.

In a historic stride towards enhancing environmental sustainability and safeguarding public health, members of the Committee on Environment and Natural Resources undertook a visit to the Nakivubo Wastewater Treatment Plant. This visit not only marks a pivotal moment for the Corporation but also stands as a remarkable example of NWSC’s commitment to responsible wastewater management and preserving ecological balance.

The Nakivubo Wastewater Treatment Plant is a monumental project for NWSC, serving as a testament to the Corporation’s dedication to improving environmental conditions and safeguarding public health. As the largest wastewater treatment plant within the East African Community, these facilities bear the responsibility of setting new standards.

In a resounding endorsement of environmental responsibility and innovative infrastructure, the Members of Parliament on the Environment and Natural Resources came together to applaud National Water and Sewerage Corporation for the remarkable Sewerage Treatment Plant.

The Managing Director of the National Water and Sewerage Corporation held a presentation in IREC for the esteemed Members of Parliamentary committee on environment and natural resources, immediately following their visit to the Wastewater Treatment Plant. The purpose of this presentation was to address and discuss key issues raised by the committee.

In a proactive response to concerns raised by the Members of Parliament in the Natural Resources Committee, Dr. Eng Silver Mugisha presented a comprehensive overview addressing the multifaceted issues that include high tariffs and billing modes, expansion of services, financial stability, and staff deployment. This presentation serves as a testament to the corporation’s dedication to fostering transparency, enhancing services, and achieving fiscal responsibility.

One of the foremost concerns raised by the Members of Parliament was related to high tariffs and billing modes. In response, the Managing Director outlined measures taken to address this issue:

  • NWSC Tariff structure pricing system established by the Corporation to charge customers for the consumption of water services. It is the rate at which water is sold to residential, commercial, industrial, PSPs, typically measured in a unit such as cubic meters. Water tariffs are designed to cover the costs of sourcing, treating, and distributing water while also maintaining and upgrading water infrastructure.
  • Tariff indexation: The corporation is instituting a tariff indexation mechanism, which will allow for regular, small-scale adjustments to tariffs to align with inflation and operational costs.
  • To better understand the impact of tariffs on consumers, the NWSC is conducting affordability analysis. The surveys assess the economic impact of water tariffs on different consumer groups, allowing for tailored solutions to address affordability concerns.
  • NWSC is determined to enhance billing modes to ensure accuracy and transparency. The Corporation uses an internally developed Billing System hosted Centrally for all her areas to carry out billing related activities. By using a centralized billing system, the NWSC can streamline billing processes, reduce errors, enhance customer service, and improve revenue collection.

Secondly the MD addressed the issue of demand for expanded services. New towns and urban centers are often characterized by rapid population growth and increased demand for essential services like clean water. Dr. Silver acknowledged this demand and has formulated a comprehensive plan to ensure these areas have access to safe and reliable water services.

  • Internally Generated Resources: NWSC is actively harnessing its internally generated resources to fund system upgrades and expansion initiatives. This includes revenue from new water connections, PSPs which are reinvested into infrastructure development and service improvements. By optimizing its financial efficiency, the Corporation ensures that the funds generated are effectively utilized for expansion projects.
  • Market Finance Projects: NWSC is exploring opportunities in the financial market to secure funds for expansion. This may involve accessing loans or bonds to support capital-intensive projects. By engaging with financial institutions and investors, the corporation ensures access to necessary capital for expansion.
  • Government-Financed Projects or internally generated resources: NWSC collaborates with the government to access financial support for expansion initiatives. Government funding can come in the form of grants, subsidies, or dedicated budget allocations to promote water infrastructure development. This partnership ensures that expansion aligns with national development goals.
  • Externally Financed Projects: To leverage external resources, NWSC engages with international development agencies, bilateral donors, and financial institutions that provide loans or grants for water infrastructure projects. This external financing complements the corporation’s resources, enabling ambitious expansion plans.

The third issue presented by the Committee of Natural Resources was the Corporation’s Financial Position and Debt Management where the MD provided an overview of the Corporations current financial position, debts owed, and debts outstanding.

Dr. Silver stressed the Corporations commitment to maintaining a fiscally responsible approach to ensure long-term financial stability. He outlined NWSC’s strategies for managing existing debts, working to reduce them over time, and avoiding further financial strain.

And lastly the MD addressed the critical issue of staff deployment within the corporation. Staff deployment plays a pivotal role in ensuring the efficient and effective delivery of services, and NWSC has formulated a strategic approach to this matter.

NWSC has implemented a range of strategic approaches aimed at improving staff deployment, enhancing skills and expertise, maintaining operational flexibility, delivering top-notch customer service, ensuring optimal resource allocation, and facilitating performance appraisal.

In the spirit of transparency and accountability, the Managing Director of NWSC reaffirmed the corporation’s commitment to resolving gratuity arrears in a timely manner. NWSC’s goal is to ensure that gratuity payments do not accumulate beyond a six-month period. This commitment aligns with the Corporation’s dedication to staff welfare and responsible financial management.

In a resounding show of appreciation and support, Members of Parliament applauded National Water and Sewerage Corporation for its proactive efforts to tackle the issue of unpaid government bills. NWSC’s initiative to address this challenge through dedicated projects has garnered recognition and commendation from the country’s legislative body.

Unpaid government bills have been a longstanding issue for the Corporation. The outstanding government bills strained the Corporation’s finances and impacted its ability to deliver critical services.

In a display of strong commitment to advancing National Water and Sewerage Corporation and enhancing its mission to provide clean water and sanitation services, Members of Parliament have pledged to support the corporation. The promise includes increasing the corporation’s budget and extending assistance in addressing the challenge of unpaid government bills.

AThe MPs’ applause for NWSC’s projects to address unpaid government bills signifies a collaborative effort to resolve a critical issue that impacts both the corporation and the government. NWSC’s commitment to fiscal responsibility, service continuity, accountability, and economic stability through these initiatives exemplifies its dedication to the welfare of the Ugandan people and the responsible management of water resources. The corporation’s stance sets a commendable precedent for other utilities and demonstrates the power of cooperation in addressing financial challenges.