Minister Nankabirwa on 5th July 2022, launched a 900b free cooking gas project to distribute free gas cylinders to the vulnerable communities.

By Guest Writer

Ms. Ruth Nankabirwa the minister of energy and mineral development, I greet you and thank you for the good work your ministry is doing towards transforming the country from fossil fuels to clean energy.

This clearly shows that Uganda has the potential to lead the struggle to ensure that all people get access to clean and affordable energy for the common good.

Minister Nankabirwa on 5th July 2022, launched a 900b free cooking gas project to distribute free gas cylinders to the vulnerable communities.

The intervention targeted LPG cooking energy to grow from current 0.8% to 20% of Ugandans households by the year 2030 .The move was to distribute at least one million liquidities  petroleum Gas cylinders and burners to Ugandans in abide to use of clean energy. Madam Hon, this was a good initiative but not good option for the target group.

Hon minister about 100 households received the yellow gas  cylinders at the launch of the 900b project in Wakiso district and each housed that received had confirmed that they have capacity to refill the cylinder at 100,000ugx.

Hon minister, I want to inform you that people that received these gas cylinders have no capacity to refill them and this will force them to change cylinders colour from yellow such that they can be sold off.


In addition most of the target groups have no capacity and knowledge on how these gas cylinders are used, with dangers that come along with gas cylinders, more sensitization was supposed to first be done and feasibility study conducted before kicking off the process.

Hon minister most people in Wakiso stay in single rooms “emizigo”, with the increasing dangers caused by gas cylinders, it’s not advisable to sleep with these cylinders in same room.

The minister on 30th November 2021, two people were killed and five others seriously injured after a gas cylinder exploded in Kisenyi Mbarara district.

In addition two people were also killed and six injured after a gas cylinder exploded at a home in Mikka trading center, wakiso district.

In October 2019, one person died and six others were injured when a gas cylinder exploded at a metal fabrication workshop at Banda along Kampala –kireka Road.

Furthermore, Hon minister you remember what happened on 2oth November 2019 at Mulago round -about over a bulged gas cylinder where the people were scared of the gas cylinders that were liking and this called on police to seal off the road to save the people.

These gas cylinders are not actually clean energy best alternatives because they have compressed gases that are toxic, flammable, corrosive and inert which a very dangerous to human life.

Hon minister, the best solution for Ugandans to transit to clean energy is use of solar power which is sustainable and cheap.

Solar energy doesn’t need monthly subscriptions since its powered by nature (sun) that is everywhere and free of charge, the other advantage is that Uganda is one of the countries that have enough sun throughout the year with mean solar radiation of 5.2per square meter per day on horizontal surface, with such blessing Uganda shouldn’t be struggling with monthly bills for electricity, gas cylinders that a toxic and electricity that is very expensive for all Ugandans. Since there is already free source of energy that is cheap and sustainable the emphasis and investment should be directed to solar.

In conclusion, Hon minister more awareness is needed to disseminate information on safety regulations by ensuring all gas dealers and operators have licenses, good ventilation, and capability to operate in safe manner.

Every cylinder that does not meet specific requirement should be pulled out of circulation.

To achieve clean energy transition the government must without fail consider the above observations and also avoid risky investments such as proposed oil projects that will worsen the national debt and climate change impacts, stop gas cooking cylinder campaigns, stop corruption and ensure good planning in the energy sector.

The author is Gerald Barekye, Research Associate

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