President Yoweri Museveni is optimistic that Uganda will collaborate with Algeria in the area of nuclear energy
The Ugandan leader was left in awe after visiting the Nuclear Research Center of Algiers on Monday during his 3-day visit to Algeria.
“I congratulate our Algerian brothers & sisters on taking the right steps in the area of Nuclear physics & energy,” Museveni said admiringly.
He explained that nuclear energy helps in the areas of medicine, agriculture, energy & propulsion among other benefits.
“Uganda already has a nuclear energy unit and we shall collaborate with the Nuclear Research Centre here to agree on specific areas of cooperation,” he said on Monday.
The nuclear energy optimism comes at a time when Uganda National Oil Company (UNOC) has signed an MoU with Sonatrach, the State Oil Company of Algeria.
The UNOC-Sonatrach deal will see Uganda work with Algeria on different oil and gas projects including the upcoming oil refinery set for construction in western Uganda.
At a press conference last week, the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development announced it will begin construction of the country’s first nuclear facility in Buyende district, eastern Uganda.
For the Buyende Nuclear Power Plant, Uganda, according to reports, will partners with China National Nuclear Corporation which would assist in developing capabilities for the peaceful use of atomic energy.
"Preparation to evaluate the Buyende Nuclear Power Plant site is ongoing to pave the way for the first nuclear power project expected to generate 2,000 MW, with the first 1,000 MW to be connected to the national grid by 2031," Dr Ruth Nankabirwa Ssentamu, the energy minister, said in a statement.
Nankabirwa warned residents of Buyende District against selling their land to speculators who are targeting the 2031 nuclear energy power plant project worth Shs34 trillion.
"I want to call upon our people of Buyende not to rush to sell their land to speculators who would lure you with huge sums of money expecting to get a lot more as compensation from the government,” she said.
Adding: “Remain with your land and government valuers will be used as usual and the rightful owners shall be compensated,"
In December 2021, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) endorsed Uganda’s nuclear energy power plant development following a successful review of the country’s nuclear infrastructure.