President Yoweri Museveni has Tuesday launched ‘Kayoola’ a prototype of a solar powered bus which was produced in Uganda by Kiira Motors Corporation.
The President applauded Makerere University and the team at Kiira Motors for developing a technology that will enhance clean energy.
“I am happy that Uganda has managed to make not just a car but a solar powered car. Africa’s problem has always been not thinking for ourselves. In the past people in the village used to rely on solar and biogas for everything. We’re back where we started,” he told dignitaries at Kampala Serena Hotel.
Museveni pointed out that Uganda has all the basic requirements in place for the manufacturing industry to thrive.
He cited peace and stability, human resource as well as a ready market for vehicles in East Africa and Africa.
“The only problem is capital because government has other priorities but since manufacturing is a viable venture, the state shall support in all ways,” Museveni remarked.
The bus was made largely by locally sourced materials (50 percent) while 20 percent of the materials were acquired from the UK, 19 percent in China and 9 percent in India.
Speaking at the launch, Minister of Higher education, Prof. Sande Stevens Tickodri asked government to fast track the operationalisation of Kiira Motors as a business enterprise.
By 2039, Kiira Motors will be able to manufacture original equipment and provide over 12,000 jobs, according to Prof. Tickodri.
“Such an investment will help catalyse linkages with other sectors and finance value addition especially in the oil and gas industry. Consequently, capital intensive projects like the standard gauge railway, roads, power dams will be funded.”
ChimpReports understands government has already provided 100 acres of land for the establishment of the Kiira Motors manufacturing plant in the Jinja Industrial business park. The establishment of the plant requires Shs 470Bn and is projected to take at least 3 years.
The team wants government to provide timely financial resources as well as put in place a well structured policy framework for the business road map.
President Museveni was recognized with an Award of Honour by Makerere University for his distinguished role in championing science and technology.
The Corporation has developed a 25 year business strategy to be implemented in five phases; plant construction, assembly of small vehicles, operationalisation of paint shop, body shop and product development.