Mbale mayor bows out with mixed scorecard

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The ten year tenure of the former Mayor of Mbale Municipality has generated  mixed reactions.

Mutwalib Zandya was elected Mayor in 2011 and served for two terms.  However, his attempts to seek a third term were frustrated when he was defeated by Forum for Democratic Change-FDC’s Kasim Namugali.

When he was elected for a second term, Mafabi said that his first task would be to solve the problem of poor garbage management and poor planning in Mbale town which had become a problem.    

As Zandya bows out, a section of residents in Mbale City has expressed mixed reactions to his tenure in office.

Hakim Watenyeli, a senior resident of Mbale City, says that nothing has changed since Zandya took over leadership. He says that Mbale has become a shadow of its past because of its poor leadership.   

Watenyeli says that Mbale was once ranked the cleanest town in East Africa in the early 70s but this is no more. He cites poor management of garbage and inadequate revenue collection which has affected service delivery. 

Hamuza Wamono, the Executive Director of Bugisu NGO Forum described Zandya’s rule as disappointing. Wamono says that Zandya failed to manage garbage collection and looked on as sewer lines were taken over by property developers.

Wamono also says that had it not been for the Uganda Support to Municipal Infrastructure Development (USMID) project, the roads and other infrastructure in the city would be in a bad state.

However, Wamono says that Zandya was always available in the office and transparent. He says that for the ten years he has been in office, he has not been involved in corruption tendencies.

David Wetaka, the President of Mbale City Development Forum, says that the entire team of both politicians and technocrats should be blamed for incompetence. 

Wetaka also says that Zandya managed to keep the council united.

But Zandya says that he has achieved more than what he expected and offered services to the people of Mbale regardless of tribe, political party and religious affiliations.   

He says that by the time he came into office, the city was so congested and full of garbage that he managed to address. Zandya tasked his successor to take up from where he stopped to steer Mbale to development.

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