Wednesday July 30 2014

City train set to roll in October

The interior view of one of the passenger train

The interior view of one of the passenger train wagons stationed in Kampala yesterday. PHOTO BY Farahani Mukisa 

By FARAHANI MUKISA & Jalira Namyalo

Rift Valley Railways (RVR) officials have confirmed that the Passenger Train Services are set to start in October with more than six coaches (wagons) ready for use, according to Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) spokesperson Peter Kaujju. Each wagon will carry more than 120 passengers.
“RVR has started demarcating stages at various points from Namanve to Kampala then to Kyengere,” Mr Kaujju added.

Meanwhile, court has ordered KCCA to stop the eviction of residents illegally occupying corridors of the Uganda Railway Corporation reserve land in the different suburbs of Kampala.

The order was issued by the acting Registrar of Nakawa High Court, Ms Flavia Nassuna, after some evictees petitioned court opposing the evictions. But before Ms Nassuna issued the order, KCCA had temporarily suspended the evictions.

KCCA, together with Uganda Railways Corporation, RVR, Uganda Electricity Distribution Company and police on Monday commenced the removal of the makeshift structures erected along the railway line reserve area.

Citing issues of “strategic planning”, Mr Kaujju, said they were having several engagements with different stakeholders to forge a way forward before the next evictions are executed.

Operations called off
“As of today [Tuesday], we have not carried out the operations as we have to rest. We worked late during the previous operations and had to switch on back the power since we had put it off to allow smooth operations,” Mr Kaujju said in an interview yesterday.

He, however, said the previous operations were “successful and peaceful” and called on squatters still occupying the railway line reserve land to leave.

“The operations were generally peaceful. We had no registered injuries or resistances. There was a lot of compliance since many people had already moved on.

“Those whom we found inside the makeshift houses were allowed time to remove their properties. We shall continue with the evictions anytime soon but can’t reveal the period for some reasons,” he said.
The most affected city dwellers are in Ndeeba Kibuye, Nalukolongo, Namuwongo and Nakawa.
The case was adjourned until August 4.