NEBBI. Islamic clerics have expressed disappointment over the failure by the President and West Nile Members of Parliament to turn up for the fund raising drive organized towards the construction of classroom blocks at Nebbi public primary school in Nebbi Municipal Council.

The fund raising was organised by the West Nile Islamic development forum officials who earlier invited President Yoweri Museveni Kaguta as their guest of honour.

However, the President didn't turn up without even delegating anybody to represent him during the function held at the school on Sunday.

According to Mr Salim Hussein Mursal, the secretary Nebbi Muslim district, they extended early invitation to the President and all the members of West Nile Parliamentary group but none of them turned up for the function.

He said Nebbi public primary school is among the oldest schools in Nebbi district which needed to be supported because it has lagged behind in terms of infrastructure despite high enrollment.

Mursal noted that the last time the school got help from the government was in 1997 through the school management grant (SMG).

“The classroom blocks we have were constructed by the community and now they are all in bad shape. Since the government could not come in to arrest the situation, we decided to organise this fund raising drive and invited the government officials to our disappointment,” he said.

As a result, the organizers ended up raising shs19m out of their earlier target of shs268m. Other things collected were 50 bags of cement and 5000 bricks.

The fund raising was organized inform of competition among the districts in West Nile with Yumbe emerging the overall winner after contributing shs5.2m.

Hajji Yusuf Abdulai Banya, the chairman West Nile Islamic development forum observed that much as they didn’t collect the amount targeted, the remaining balance will be divided among stakeholders including the government to clear.

“In a week’s time, the foundation stone for the classroom block and administration block will be laid and work will start immediately. We are hopeful that it will take us one year to complete the block,” Banya said.

But Mr Bob Williams Labeja, the Nebbi resident district commissioner apologised on behalf of the President and advised the organisers to avail him with the bill of quantity of the buildings so that he can write to the office of the President for support.

Meanwhile Mr Patrick Angala, the Nebbi municipal education officer promised that the municipal council will consider allocating 65 million shillings in the next financial year budget for the construction of a classroom block at the school.

He urged the clerics to work together with municipal officials for the development of the school.