Construction management functions in public buildings in Uganda: A case study of Rwenzori region local governments.
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The government of Uganda and other development partners are making a lot of investments in form of building infrastructure with the aim of improving the quality of social services like education, medical care and general public administration. Most of the service delivery is increasingly allotted to private firms with the aim of improving efficiency and effectiveness. As a result public buildings have been constructed by private companies and supervised by the local government engineering departments. However, most of the buildings in this category have been associated with poor workmanship, use of poor materials, and lack of proper construction procedures, reworking and at times collapsing. The overall objective of this research was to assess the levels at which the local government Engineering staff and the contractors carry out management functions in the construction process of public buildings in local governments in Uganda. The research findings were used to make recommendations towards the improvement of construction management of public buildings. In fulfilling this objective, the levels at which both local Government Engineering staff and the contractors carry out the managerial functions were analyzed and compared. The researcher studied the construction management functions of planning, organizing, directing, control, monitoring and evaluation. The responses of both local government engineering staff and contractors were measured using the same scale. The study was carried out in seven districts and two municipal councils in Rwenzori region in Western Uganda. Sixty five (65) respondents consisting of twenty four (24) local government engineering staff and forty one (41) contractors complied. This constituted 81% of the targeted number of respondents. The study, found out that the management functions apart from planning for both local government engineering staff and the contractors were below the average value of 3.0 when measured on the 5- likert scale. A null hypothesis that the management levels of local government engineering staff and the contractors are the same was done using a paired t-test. At 95% level of confidence, it was found out that there is a significant difference. The key recommendations are that the local governments should address the aspects of training, innovation and providing skills to engineering personnel, material selection and testing. The construction managers should be involved at design stage to ease the construction process.