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Uganda signs up to CoST initiative

Uganda has become the 10th country to join the Construction Sector Transparency Initiative (CoST), a targeted anti-corruption and waste scheme supported by the ICE, the World Bank, international consultants body FIDIC and the ONE Campaign.

The initiative aims to increase transparency in the delivery of public construction projects and demonstrate value for money by ensuring information on projects is made public by clients.

It also aims to improve the financial management of projects.

The scheme was launched last year following a pilot in 2009 involving eight countries including the UK, Tanzania, Guatemala, Ethiopia and the Philippines. Uganda follows El Salvador which joined in May, and is the fifth ­African country to sign up.

The scheme has already delivered benefits for economies and communities. In Ethiopia, the CoST assurance team recommended the adoption of an alternative design for a 33km rural road, which saved an estimated $3.7M (£2.3M).

“I am delighted to welcome Uganda to CoST. With 10 countries now on board, we are in a position to show that CoST really is a global phenomenon, and that it creates genuine and measurable impact. I have no doubt that Uganda will have a crucial role in moving the programme to the next level,” said CoST board member and deputy chairman of the CoST Ethiopia Multi-Stakeholder Group Bekure Ketema Gebremariam.

Uganda National Roads Authority planning director David Luyimbazi agreed that Uganda’s membership of CoST was an important step.

“With five African countries now working together we can lead Uganda, the wider continent - and the world - in promoting transparency and accountability in public construction bring,” he said.

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