The Executive Director of the Uganda National Cultural Centre (UNCC) Francis Peter Ojede, has defended his management’s backing for the redevelopment of the National Theatre land through a public private partnership. Ojede however refuted claims that UNCC land popularly known as the National Theatre, has been sold or is being sold.
“As long as I am still the director, I will fight to protect the theatre,” he maintained that: “Nothing is for sale or has been sold.”
UNCC and the Government are planning to re-develop the theatre under Public Private Partnership Act of 2015,” Ojede said, addingthat there is no developer in place yet.
Ojede’s UNCC management and the Ministry of Labour, Gender and Social development recently came under scathing criticism from the arts and culture fraternity as well as from the general public for trying to giveaway the National Theatre land under the guise of redeveloping it.
We can however reveal that the redevelopment process is part of a well discussed and documented plot by the government to secure land to erect an office block to accommodate the rising number of MPs. The decision to target the UNCC land, according to documents of two meetings we obtained, was reached because of its proximity to Parliament and was hence considered appropriate for MPs to attend sessions.