Parliament has approved the creation of 19 municipalities intended to improve administration and delivery of services to the people; among them being home town, Ibanda.
In September 2013, Ibanda District Council passed a resolution calling for Ibanda Town Council to be upgraded to a municipality.
20 councillors argued that the town has developed significantly to warrant a municipal status after the district secretary for finance, Ben Mazirwe, tabled the motion.
The district resolution was then forwarded to the Ministry of Local Government for consideration.
The town clerk, Ms Justinah Barekye, said that the town council was gazzeted in 1996 and currently has a population of 60,000.
Social infrastructure facilities include a hospital, three equipped health centres and many private health centres.
The town has a teacher training college, many private and government primary and secondary schools as well as business and technical schools.
The revenue mainly comes from six markets, shops, two parks, commercial banks, savings and credit cooperative organisations, hotels and salons among other enterprises.
The town council has four tarmacked streets, and over 300 vehicles from Mbarara, Kamwenge, Buhweju and Kiruhura districts transit through the town daily.
There are five wards in the district including Kyaruhanga, Kagongo, Rugazi, Kigarama and Bufunda and town also boasts of tourist attractions such as the tomb of late St George Galt- the British commissioner for Western Province during the colonial administration who was speared to death while visiting Ibanda on May 19 1905.
There are also the waterfalls of Mukazanyara, Ibanda Hills and the tomb of Uganda’s first female sub-county chief, the late Julia Kibubura, at whose home commissioner Galt was killed.
In 2013, New Vision, ranked Ibanda town the cleanest of them all.
In July 2015, a section of leaders opposed plans to upgrade Ibanda town council to municipality status.
In a letter to the Ibanda district council dated 20th, July, 2015, the Minister of Local Government Adolf Mwesige said he had considered upgrading Ibanda town council into a municipality status after raising the required population of 100,000 people.
Levis Kunanuka, the LCV councilor for Kashangura Sub County in Ibanda district was opposed carving his sub county into the municipality arguing that the people he represents were not consulted first before being included in the municipality upon which he threatened vowed court action.
Benon Kaimutsya, Nsasi sub county LC3 chairperson, also opposed the plan to include Nsasi in the new municipality saying his constituents were quite happy to remain under Ibanda district council.
Nonetheless, Robert Kuheebwa, Eria Mandioza, Melechiedes Kajwengye continued lobbying for municipality status for Ibanda town council.
This week, the Minister of Local Government, Hon. Adolf Mwesige said government considered it necessary to create the municipalities for “proper planning and expansion of the area to ensure orderly development; having taken into account the multiplier effect on the economy of the area, the economic viability, the destiny and wishes of the people concerned.”
Twelve of the municipalities created become effective retrospectively on July 1, 2015.
These are Nansana, Kira, Makindye Ssabagabo (all in Wakiso district), Kisoro (in Kisoro district), Mityana (in Mityana district), Kitgum (in Kitgum district), Koboko (in Koboko district), Mubende (in Mubende district), Kumi (in Kumi district), Luganzi (in Buikwe district), Kamuli (in Kamuli district) and Kapchorwa (in Kapchorwa district).
In addition, seven municipalities will become effective at the start of the next financial year, July 1, 2016.
These are; Ibanda (in Ibanda district), Njeru (in Buikwe district), Apac (in Apac district), Nebbi (in Nebbi district), Bugiri (in Bugiri district), Sheema (in Sheema district) and Kotido (in Kotido district).
Parliament however failed to approve a motion for the creation of 25 districts due to lack of the required quorum.
The motion was moved in 2012.
The new Ibanda municipality will comprise four divisions of Nsasi, Kagongo, Nyabuhikye and Bisheshe.
The writer is a youth enthusiastic about his home town, Ibanda