Public participation in environmental and social impact assessment: a case study of Kampala-Jinja expressway PPP project
Muwaza, Andrew Remmy
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Full public participation is a key mechanism of the operational principles in the ESIA process for development projects and this study aimed at evaluating the effectiveness of ESIA as a decision-making tool by assessing whether the process adhered to one of its operating principle of public involvement for the proposed Kampala-Jinja Expressway Project. The specific objectives of the study were to: assess the extent to which public views have been captured, determine if the various stakeholders are aware of the project and if participated in the process, examine the level of knowledge about the project from different stakeholders, and evaluate the principles, procedures and methods that were used to involve engagement of stakeholders. A total sample of 120 primary respondents study was obtained from four villages crossed by the Kampala-Jinja express highway while the key informants include Atacama Consulting, Chairpersons (LC I) of the respective villages, and UNRA staff. A descriptive design was used for the study in the study. Both random and purposive sampling was used in the study to obtain quantitative and qualitative information form primary respondents and key informants respectively. The findings of the study depicted that majority of the local people were aware and participated in the ESIA process, the public views were captured during the ESIA process through, the local people had knowledge about the KJE ESIA process while the principles, procedures, and methods used during the ESIA proposes conformed to the requirements of the ESIA process however to ensure to that public participation is comprehensive the public should always be engaged early enough in the planning stage, more time investment during the undertaking of the ESIA process particularly stakeholder consultations, the ESIA report should always be taken back to the community for a public hearing and further research needs to be done to establish whether the ESIA process helps in the minimization of the impacts since it deals with impact identification and how to mitigate the impacts.