Nakasongola district council has approved a budget of 10.4 million shillings to buy smartphones for councilors to ease communication.
25 councilors represent 8 sub-counties, five town councils and Special Interest Groups at the district council.
Fredrick Lwanga Balaam, the district speaker for Nakasongola says that there has been a communication vacuum between the district and councilors.
Lwanga explains that smartphones are needed to share council reports, invitations and other official communications to minimize unnecessary movement as well as costs of travel to reach every councilor.
Lwanga adds that the phones were supposed to be purchased in the financial year 2017/18 but the office of Chief Administrative Officer did not have funds.
He however noted that he met the Chief Administrative Officer and Planning Unit which agreed to purchase the smartphones in quarter one for financial year 2020/21 at cost of 10.4 million shillings.
Charles Bogere the district councilor for Nakasongola town council says that each councilor earns 250,000 shillings per sitting which is inadequate to buy smartphones.
Bogere adds that like IPADs for Members of Parliament, smartphones will also be used for research to facilitate debate in council sittings and improve service delivery.
Stanley Bagonza the district councilor for Migyera town council says they have been missing timely updates from Nakasongola district over lack of smartphones.
Bagonza added that the budget allocated for the smartphones is insufficient and won’t affect any activity to worry residents.
Rose Namayega the Nakasongola district planner confirmed that the money was re-allocated from the budget for administrative costs and it will be available to implement council resolution.
Alex Felix Majeme the Nakasongola District Chief Administrative officer promised to implement the resolution.
Sam Kigula the LCV chairperson Nakasongola says the district will be saving money by buying smartphones for the councilors.
The councilors also approved the district budget of 29 billion shillings for financial year 2020/21.
Purchasing smartphones is likely to end the long bickering between the councilors and office of the Chief Administrative Officer.
Last year the former District Chief Administrative Officer Robert Abenaitwe clashed with councilors after he refused to implement the same resolution to purchase phones citing lack of funds.
He was later transferred after his relations with councillors turned frosty.