Japan grants Uganda Shs 1.2b for road maintenance

Do-nou Technology
Japan introduced Do-nou technology -- ideal for rural road construction, maintenance and repair.

Kampala, Uganda | URN | The Government of Uganda has received a grant worth shillings 1.2 billion to implement the second phase of Do-nou project.

Using the Do-nou technology, the three-year Community Road Empowerment (CORE) project is intended to empower communities to actively participate in self-sustaining developmental projects to maintain their roads using local materials and technology.

Do-nou is a Japanese word, which means the wrapping of soil or appropriate filling material into gunny bags and then laying them systematically on the road or other application areas.

The project was first implemented last year in areas of Kamwokya, Kyebando, and Kaliba in Kampala. It was also implemented in Nakkedde, Tumbali, Luguzi and Kabumba in Wakiso districts.

Do-nou” Technology involves use of gunny bags filled with materials like soil, murram, sand or gravel to construct roads. The filled bags are properly tied and compacted manually or using a pedestrian roller.

The second phase of the project shall be implemented in Kasese, Bunyangabu, Kabarole and Kyenjojo districts and will run from February 2020 to January 2021.

Speaking at the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding with Uganda at the Works Ministry offices on Thursday, the Ambassador of Japan to Uganda Kameda Kazuaki said the project aims at improving the condition of community access roads while empowering communities to be self-sustaining.

The project shall involve training of youths who shall implement the project and transfer skills for future benefit.

Kazuaki says that with the growing climate change challenges, Uganda needs technologies that communities can use to sustain their roads.

Samson Mukiibi, an Engineer at CORE says the technology has improved transportation in the areas they worked on in the first phase and asked government to adopt it. He says the technology is labour intensive, cheaper and more convenient.

He says a kilometre of Do-nou constructed road costs about shillings 50 million shillings yet shillings 80 million is needed when using conventional methods. He says the bags used are locally manufacture and are sized 450mm by 600 mm.

Mukiibi says CORE has trained over 160 youths in the Do-nou Technology and more shall be trained. CORE is working with Mount-Elgon Labour-Based Training Center (MELTC) to extend further training to youths in technologies to solve road challenges.

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The State Minister for Works Peter Lokeris says that innovations like these are important for Uganda especially seeing that there is still a funding gap in the roads sectors.

He says the Ministry has monitored the technology and is satisfied with the works and is now working to make it part of its working manual after consultations with different government agencies.

So far this method of constructing feeder roads has been implemented in 25 countries including Kenya and Rwanda. The roads have a lifetime of five years.

This technology is also applied in the construction of dam embankments, road maintenance, culvert and bridge construction, flood routing dykes, footpaths in flooded areas, building foundations and retaining walls.