As part of the GoU privatization policy to attract foreign direct capital under the electricity distribution subsector, the operations of UEDCL in the urban and semi-urban areas except for the formerly off-grid stations were concessioned to a private operator Umeme Limited, a consortium belonging to Globeleq-UK from 01 March 2005 for 20 years under a Lease and Assignment Agreement (LAA). Accordingly, to ensure the assets are in the right state of service as stipulated in the LAA, UEDCL has got a dedicated division that conducts quarterly inspections & compliance checks on UMEME.
Among many strategies put in place by UEDCL to ensure hygiene on Umeme is the establishment of a Concessioner Network Asset Database through a Geographical Information System (GIS). To further ensure there is taxpayers’ value-for-money, UEDCL strictly continues to monitor the quality of works and materials executed and installed respectively in all the concession areas. This is done through a series of reviews by the asset owner UEDCL. Due to these and many other checks in place, the distribution assets have proved to be financially sustainable. The total asset value as per the statement of financial position (2019) has increased from Shs 1,210.4 billion to Shs 1,699.2 billion with a 77.2% of the same, arising from concession investment assets by Umeme Limited. “These investments have heightened the GoU agenda of industrialising the economy to create jobs hence resulting into socio-economic transformation,” clarifies Mr. Mwesigwa Paul, the UEDCL Managing Director. He further denotes that the 22 GoU gazetted industrial parks across the country are a game-changer in the presently suppressed electricity demand. Overall, since 2005 when the GoU entered into the LAA with Umeme, electricity consumers have grown from 263,000 to 1.5 Million as at the end of 2019.