Residents living near Namugongo Martyrs Shrine are to be relocated and compensated by the government to pave way for the construction of hotels that will accommodate tourists visiting the shrines.
Upon receiving the report from the Committee on Physical Infrastructure, Ignatius Mudimi, the Deputy Chairperson of Parliament’s Budget Committee, disclosed the idea.
According to Mudimi, the government has set aside Ugx3.488 billion to complete the critical works at the Uganda Martyrs Catholic Shrine, Namugongo.
“The government has set aside Shs3.488bn to complete critical works at the Uganda Martyrs Catholic Shrine in Namugongo, with the funds donated to the Namugongo Catholic Shrine to finish the presbytery, offices, and the priests’ residence,” he said.
Legislators believe that the donation that government has given will significantly impact Uganda’s tourism industry.
Sheema South legislator Elijah Mushemeza applauded the government’s action and said Namugongo facility could swiftly inject money into the economy.
However, other legislators have expressed concerns about the allocation of funding, arguing that all funding to the Namugongo Martyrs shrines has only benefited the Catholic side, while other religious denominations have also been running facilities at the tourist site.
The Ministry of Gender has also requested Shs2.590bn for the rehabilitation of Gadafi Mosque in Old Kampala.
The Government of Uganda remains committed to supporting the country’s religious tourism industry and preserving its cultural heritage.