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ELECTRICITY ACT (1964 REVISION).

ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS.

   Section

PART I
INTERPRETATION.

   1.   Interpretation.

PART II
THE UGANDA ELECTRICITY BOARD.

   2.   Reestablishment of the board.

   3.   Constitution of the board, etc.

   4.   Meetings and procedure of the board.

   5.   Board to be body corporate, etc.

   6.   Functions of the board.

   7.   Revenue to exceed outgoings.

   8.   General powers of the board.

   9.   Acquisition of land.

   10.   Consultative council.

   11.   Powers of Minister.

   12.   Tariffs and contracts.

   13.   Funds and investment.

   14.   Borrowing powers of the board.

   15.   Accounts and annual report.

   16.   Board's rights in relation to the generation, etc. of electricity.

PART III
SUPPLY.

   17.   Board's duty to supply.

   18.   Supply for public lamps, etc.

   19.   Supply for temporary purposes.

   20.   Supply for standby purposes, etc.

   21.   Maximum power.

   22.   Use of transformers.

   23.   Special fittings.

   24.   Use of meters.

   25.   Removal, etc. of meters.

   26.   Correctness of meters.

   27.   Testing of meters.

   28.   Special reading of meters.

   29.   Notice to be given to the board prior to removal.

   30.   Payments in arrear.

   31.   Security for payment.

   32.   Discontinuance of supply.

   33.   Failure to supply.

   34.   Maps and plans.

   35.   Entry on premises to ascertain quantity of electricity consumed, etc.

PART IV
WORKS.

   36.   Wayleaves.

   37.   Power to cut trees, enter on land, etc.

   38.   Moving of lines, etc.

   39.   Power to break up roads, etc.

   40.   Alteration of pipes, etc.

   41.   Works which affect other lawful works.

   42.   Emergencies.

PART V
INSPECTION, TESTING, ETC.

   43.   Electrical inspectors.

   44.   Testing of board's electrical plant.

   45.   Testing on consumer's premises.

   46.   Test instruments.

   47.   Inspector's power of entry, etc.

   48.   Board to give facilities for testing.

   49.   Accidents.

   50.   Defective plant, etc.

PART VI
MISCELLANEOUS AND SUPPLEMENTAL.

   51.   Offences and penalties.

   52.   Board's lines not subject to distress, etc.

   53.   Protection of certain persons from personal liability.

   54.   Restriction on right of entry to premises.

   55.   Compensation, settlement of disputes, etc.

   56.   Recovery of debts and penalties.

   57.   Service of documents.

   58.   Regulations.

   59.   Wayleaves, etc. not required to be registered.

   60.   Effect on certain Acts.

   61.   Repeal and savings.

 

      Schedule   Transitional provisions.

 

CHAPTER 144
THE ELECTRICITY ACT (1964 REVISION).

Commencement: 1 July, 1961.

   An Act to provide for the reestablishment of the Uganda Electricity Board and for the exercise and performance by that board of functions relating to the generation, transmission, distribution and supply of electricity and certain other matters, for the inspection and testing of electrical plant and the safe use of electricity, and for purposes incidental to and connected with the matters aforesaid.

 

PART I
INTERPRETATION.

 

1.   Interpretation.

   In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires—

   (a)   "authorised undertaker" means a person authorised or required by any Act of Parliament—

      (i)   to construct, maintain or repair any road or bridge or to carry out roadworks; or

      (ii)   to provide the public with a supply of gas or water, or with drainage or sewerage services;

   (b)   "board" means the Uganda Electricity Board reestablished under this Act;

   (c)   "bulk supply" means a supply of electricity to be used for the purposes of distribution;

   (d)   "case of emergency", with reference to a right of entry on or to land or premises conferred under this Act, means a case in which the person requiring entry to the land or premises in question has reasonable cause to believe that circumstances exist which are likely to endanger life or property, and that immediate entry to the land or premises is necessary to verify the existence of those circumstances or to ascertain their cause or to effect a remedy;

   (e)   "consumer" means a person supplied or entitled to be supplied with electricity by the board;

   (f)   "council" means the consultative council established under section 10;

   (g)   "distributing main" means the portion of any main which is used for the purpose of giving origin to service lines for the purposes of general supply;

   (h)   "electrical fittings" means electric lines, fittings, apparatus and appliances designed for use by consumers of electricity for lighting, heating, motive power and other purposes for which electricity can be used;

   (i)   "electrical inspector" means a person appointed to be an electrical inspector under this Act;

   (j)   "electrical plant" means any electric line, plant, equipment, apparatus and appliances used for the purposes of generating, transmitting or distributing electricity, and does not include electrical fittings;

   (k)   "electricity" means electrical energy generated, supplied or used for any purpose except the transmission of a message;

   (l)   "electric line" means a wire, conductor or other means used for the purpose of conveying, transmitting or distributing electricity with any casing, coating, covering, tube, pipe or insulator enclosing, surrounding or supporting it or any part of it, any apparatus connected with it for the purpose of conveying, transmitting, distributing or transforming electricity and any pole, standard, guard, staywire, danger plate or other apparatus or appliance required in connection with it;

   (m)   "emergency works" means works the execution of which at the time when they are executed is requisite—

      (i)   in order to put an end to, or to prevent the arising of, circumstances then existing or imminent which are calculated to cause danger to persons or property, interruption of a supply or service afforded by the board or an authorised undertaker or substantial loss to the board or an authorised undertaker; or

      (ii)   in order to enable an authorised undertaker or the board to afford a supply or service to satisfy an obligation created by this or any other Act to afford a supply or service within a time fixed by or under the Act,

and in relation to works comprising items of which some fall within the definition and others do not, includes only those that fall within it and such others of them as cannot be reasonably severed from them;

   (n)   "financial year" means the period of 12 months ending on the 31st"> December or on such other date as the Minister may from time to time specify by writing under his or her hand;

   (o)   "general supply" means the general supply of electricity to ordinary consumers and includes, unless otherwise specially agreed with an urban authority, the general supply of electricity to public lamps, traffic signals, traffic bollards or other street signs or apparatus maintained and controlled by the authority, but does not include the supply of electricity to any consumer under special agreement;

   (p)   "land" includes land covered by buildings and land covered by water;

   (q)   "licence" and "licensee" mean respectively a licence granted under section 16 and the holder of the licence;

   (r)   "local authority" means an urban authority or the administration of a district established under the provisions of the Local Governments Act;

   (s)   "main" means any electric line through which electricity may be supplied or be intended to be supplied by the board for the purposes of general supply;

   (t)   "Minister" means, in any particular section of this Act, the Minister for the time being responsible for the administration of that section;

   (u)   "minor works" means works executed solely for the purpose of erecting or placing service lines (not being works which relate to the placing or intended placing of a service line or a part of a service line for a continuous length of 100 yards or more in or along a public road) or works executed solely for the purpose of maintaining, repairing or altering electric lines or apparatus;

   (v)   "premises" includes open air premises, except in section 54;

   (w)   "road" means any road, whether public or private, together with its curbs, stormwater drains and supporting banks, and any street, square, court, alley, lane, bridge, footway, trace, track, path, passage or highway, whether a thoroughfare or not;

   (x)   "roadworks" means the reconstruction, widening, diversion or alteration of the level of any road or part of a road or any alteration in the relative widths of the carriageways or footways of the road;

   (y)   "service line" means any electric line through which electricity may be supplied or be intended to be supplied by the board to a consumer either from any main or directly from the premises of the board;

   (z)   "urban authority" means a municipal council or town council within the meaning of the Local Governments Act;

   (aa)   "value of the supply" means the amount of electricity supplied by the board to any consumer or the maximum power demand of a consumer in any given period (according to the method by which the board elects to charge).

 

PART II
THE UGANDA ELECTRICITY BOARD.

 

2.   Reestablishment of the board.

   (1) Subject to this Act, the former board is reestablished under the same name.

   (2) All lands, buildings, rights, monies, securities, credits, effects and all property of or to which immediately prior to the commencement of this Act the former board was seised, possessed or entitled and the benefit of all contracts entered into by the former board insofar as a benefit existed immediately prior to the commencement of this Act shall be vested in the board to the same extent and for the same estate or interest as they were previously vested in the former board to be held and enjoyed, sued for, recovered, maintained, dealt with and disposed of in accordance with this Act.

   (3) The board shall in all respects be subject to and discharge all obligations and liabilities to which the former board was subject immediately prior to the commencement of this Act; and where any such obligation or liability was undertaken by the former board by virtue of any contract made by the former board, the contract shall be deemed to have been made by the board notwithstanding that it was entered into prior to the commencement of this Act.

   (4) In this section, "former board" means the Uganda Electricity Board established under the Uganda Electricity Board Ordinance.

 

3.   Constitution of the board, etc.

   (1) Subject to this section, the board shall consist of a chairperson and not less than five nor more than eight other members who shall—

   (a)   be appointed by the Minister;

   (b)   be eligible for reappointment; and

   (c)   hold office for such period, being not less than two years, and subject to such conditions (including conditions as to payment by the board of salary or other remuneration), as the Minister directs at the time of appointment or, with the consent of the person appointed, at any time thereafter.

   (2) The chairperson and members of the board shall be appointed by the Minister from persons appearing to the Minister to be qualified for membership by reason of their having had experience of and shown capability in electricity supply, local government or industrial, agricultural, commercial, financial, educational, scientific or administrative matters.

   (3) The appointment of the chairperson or of any other member of the board may be terminated by six months' notice in writing given by the Minister to the chairperson or the member, or by the chairperson or the member, to the Minister.

   (4) The Minister may give general or special directions to the board relating to the payment of pensions or gratuities on retirement, death or termination of services to the chairperson and other members of the board or to or for the benefit of their dependents, as the case may be, and the board shall give effect to the directions.

   (5) The board may reimburse the chairperson and other members of the board for any expenses reasonably incurred in, or incidental to or in connection with, the exercise and performance of their powers and duties under this Act.

 

4.   Meetings and procedure of the board.

   (1) Subject to this section, the board shall regulate its own procedure.

   (2) The board shall appoint a member of the board to be its deputy chairperson.

   (3) The chairperson, or in his or her absence the deputy chairperson, shall preside at meetings of the board and shall have a casting as well as a deliberative vote.

   (4) In the absence of the chairperson and the deputy chairperson from any meeting of the board, the members present shall elect one of their number to preside at that meeting, and the member so elected shall in respect of that meeting have the powers and perform the duties of the chairperson, except that he or she shall not have a casting vote.

   (5) The quorum at a meeting of the board shall be three and, subject to the provisions of this section relating to the casting vote of the chairperson or deputy chairperson, every question before any such meeting shall be decided by a majority of the members present and voting.

   (6) The board shall under the powers conferred by section 8(1)(e) appoint and employ a secretary, who shall not be a member of the board.

 

5.   Board to be body corporate, etc.

   (1) The board shall be a body corporate having perpetual succession and a common seal and may in its corporate name sue and be sued and, for and in connection with the purposes of this Act, may acquire, hold, manage and dispose of real and personal property, borrow and lend money, enter into contracts and perform such other acts as bodies corporate may by law perform.

   (2) The seal of the board shall be authenticated by the signature of the chairperson of the board or some other member of the board authorised by the board to act for that purpose, and of the secretary to the board or some other person authorised by the board to act in that behalf.

   (3) Any order or decision of the board may be signified on behalf of the board under the hand of the chairperson of the board, any other member of the board authorised by the board to act for that purpose or the secretary to the board.

   (4) Any instrument or contract (other than an instrument or contract relating to land) which, if executed or entered into by a person not being a body corporate, would not require to be under seal, may be executed or entered into on behalf of the board by any member, officer or servant of the board generally or specially authorised by the board in that behalf.

   (5) Every document purporting to be—

   (a)   an instrument executed or issued by the board and to be sealed with the seal of the board authenticated in the manner provided in subsection (2);

   (b)   an order or decision of the board and to be signified in the manner provided in subsection (3); or

   (c)   an instrument or contract of the kind mentioned in subsection (4) and to be executed or entered into on behalf of the board in the manner provided in that subsection,

shall be received in evidence and shall be deemed to be so executed or issued by the board, so signified on behalf of the board or so executed or entered into on behalf of the board without further proof, unless the contrary is shown.

 

6.   Functions of the board.

   The functions of the board shall be—

   (a)   to generate, transmit, distribute and supply electricity and to establish, acquire, maintain and operate undertakings for that purpose;

   (b)   to secure, so far as practicable, the development, extension and cheapening of supplies of electricity;

   (c)   to make such provision as appears to it to be appropriate, either by itself or in consultation with any other organisation, for advancing the skill of its employees by education, training or otherwise;

   (d)   to conduct either by itself, or jointly with any other person, research, experiments or trials for the improvement of methods of generation, transmission, distribution or use of electricity and incur such expenditure for the purpose as the board may think fit, and make contributions to the expenditure of any other person engaged on such research, experiments or trials with the object of achieving such improvements and of promoting the use of electricity; and

   (e)   to perform any duty it is required to perform under this Act.

 

7.   Revenue to exceed outgoings.

   (1) The board shall so perform its functions under this Act as to ensure that, taking one year with another, the revenues of the board exceed the outgoings of the board properly chargeable to revenue account.

   (2) For the purposes of subsection (1), the words "the outgoings of the board properly chargeable to revenue account" mean all charges which in the normal conduct of business are proper to be charged to revenue account, including, in particular, proper provisions for—

   (a)   the depreciation or renewal of assets or the redemption of any loan raised by the board (whichever is the greater); and

   (b)   allocations to reserves.

 

8.   General powers of the board.

   (1) Subject to this Act, the board may, for the purpose of exercising and performing its functions under this Act—

   (a)   supply electricity to, or take electricity from, any person inside or outside Uganda;

   (b)   make and recover charges for electricity supplied by it;

   (c)   acquire by purchase, lease or otherwise, construct, erect, maintain, alter or improve buildings, machinery, plant, transmission lines, distribution lines, mains, waterworks, reservoirs, canals, watercourses, railways, roads, bridges, pipe lines and any other apparatus or works;

   (d)   sell, let, exchange or hypothecate any buildings, machinery, plants, transmission lines, distribution lines, mains, waterworks, reservoirs, canals, watercourses, railways, roads, bridges, pipe lines and other apparatus or works which it has acquired, constructed or erected;

   (e)   appoint and employ such persons as it thinks fit, pay them such remuneration and allowances as it thinks fit, grant them such leave as it thinks fit, and dismiss them;

   (f)   provide for persons in its employ or their dependents by means of insurance with an insurance company or a pension or provident fund or otherwise, pecuniary benefits upon retirement, death or termination of services or in the event of sickness or injury;

   (g)   cause surveys, plans, sections, maps, drawings and estimates to be made by or through its officers, servants or agents;

   (h)   purchase or sell coal, oil, wood or other fuel, steam, water, cement and other materials and stores;

   (i)   manufacture and sell by-products, electrical plant, poles, works, apparatus and fittings;

   (j)   sell, hire or otherwise supply electrical plant, apparatus and fittings and install, repair, maintain or remove any such plant, apparatus and fittings;

   (k)   build houses and sell or let such houses;

   (l)   lend money to its employees for the purpose of building houses or otherwise as it may think fit;

   (m)   insure against any losses, damages, risks and liabilities which it may incur;

   (n)   carry on all such other activities as may appear to it to be requisite, advantageous or convenient for it to carry on for or in connection with or incidental to the exercise and performance of its functions under this Act; and

   (o)   exercise any power conferred upon it under the other provisions of this Act.

   (2) The board may appoint a chief executive officer to the board who shall—

   (a)   hold office for such period and subject to such conditions as the board may think fit; and

   (b)   subject to the directions of the board on matters of policy, be charged with the direction of the business of the board and its administration and organisation and, on behalf of the board, with the appointment and control of the staff of the board.

 

9.   Acquisition of land.

   (1) Whenever any land or interest in land is required by the board, the board may—

   (a)   if the land is alienated public land, acquire it by agreement with its owner; or

   (b)   if the land is unalienated public land, or if the board is unable to acquired it by agreement, notify the Minister that the land or the interest in the land specified in the notice is required by the board.

   (2) When any notice has been served on the Minister under subsection (1)(b)—

   (a)   if the land is unalienated public land, the Minister may, in his or her discretion, upon such terms as he or she may think fit to impose, make such arrangements with the Uganda Land Commission or the appropriate district land board as may be necessary to place the land at the disposal of the board; or

   (b)   if the land is alienated public land, the Government may, in its discretion and if it is permitted by law so to do, acquire the land compulsorily and then make such arrangements with the Land Commission as may be necessary to place it, upon such terms as the Government may think fit to impose, at the disposal of the board.

   (3) In this section—

   (a)   "alienated" in relation to public land has the same meaning as in the Land Act, and "unalienated public land" shall be interpreted accordingly;

   (b)   "Land Commission" means the Land Commission established by article 238 of the Constitution.

 

10.   Consultative council.

   (1) There is established a consultative council consisting of not more than 12 members to be appointed by the Minister of whom—

   (a)   not less than half shall be appointed to represent the interests of local authorities in the areas in which electricity is distributed under the provisions of this Act; and

   (b)   the remainder shall be appointed to represent agriculture, commerce, industry and the general interests of consumers of electricity or other persons interested in the development of electricity.

   (2) The chairperson of the council shall be appointed by the Minister from among the members of the council.

   (3) Every member of the council (including the chairperson) shall vacate his or her office on the expiry of two years from the date of his or her appointment as member; but—

   (a)   any member may at any time resign his or her office by writing under his or her hand addressed to the Minister;

   (b)   the Minister may at any time terminate the appointment of any member if he or she is satisfied that it is in the public interest to do so; and

   (c)   any member on or after the expiry or termination of his or her period of office shall be eligible for reappointment.

   (4) A person may be appointed a member of the council under subsection (1)(a) whether or not he or she is a member of a local authority.

   (5) The council shall be charged with the duties of advising the board and the Minister on—

   (a)   any matter affecting the distribution of electricity either in Uganda generally or in any part of it;

   (b)   the variation of tariffs; and

   (c)   the provision of new or improved electricity services in Uganda or any part of it,

whether any such matter is the subject of a representation to it by consumers or other persons or is a matter to which consideration ought to be given apart from any such representation.

   (6) The council shall where practicable be informed by the board of its general plans and arrangements for performing the functions and duties of the board under this Act.

   (7) The board shall—

   (a)   reimburse the chairperson and other members of the council for any expenses reasonably

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