Tororo district hosts three Uganda's major cement factories, including Tororo, Simba and Hima.
The prices for cement have soared again in the last two weeks, Kikubolane has established.
The price increase has been attributed to erratic power supply that has affected many cement producing factories in areas of Tororo region.
Tororo district hosts three Uganda’s major cement factories, including Tororo, Simba and Hima.
The development has negatively affected the construction sector.
In Kampala and Wakiso, Kikubolane has established that a bag of cement has risen from UGX 32,000 to UGX 37,000 and UGX 40,000, an increase of about UGX8,000 in the last two weeks only.
Cement dealers say the irregular power supply has affected the production levels— forcing them to buy diesel to run their machines and in the process shifting the additional cost to the final cost of cement.
Mr. Brij Gagrani, the executive director of Tororo Cement told reporters that the power challenge has been ongoing for two weeks.
Gagrani said the increased cost of production has also affected production levels.
Tororo Cement had reduced their production from 8,000 metric tonnes of cement to 2,000 metric tonnes daily due to unreliable power, he said.
“We are only supplied with 15 megawatts during the day and 10 megawatts at night. This is against our request of 30 megawatts to produce at full capacity,” Gagrani was quoted as saying.
Mr. Gagrani said the company can no longer meet the rising demand in the market.
The Hima Cement commercial director, Israel Tinkasimire, said they are only given power from 8:00 pm to 8:00 am, which he says has also affected their level of production.
“We produce close to 120 tonnes per hour every day. Now imagine the losses we have made for the last two weeks without full production,” he was quoted in a media interview.
The power distributor, said they’re aware of the problem and said they’re doing their best to address it.
Mr. Charles Bulega, a builder in Nsaggu Kajjansi town council, says he has been asked by his boss to halt the construction works for a house until cement prices stabilise.
UMEME spokesperson Peter Kaujju attributed the problem to a burnt cable at the Tororo power substation, which led to a total blackout.
“We are working day and night with UETCL to reconnect the power within this week,” Kaujju said.
He noted that right now they can only produce up to 5 megawatts, which leads to the rationing of power and subsequent blackouts in Tororo and Busia.