Tuesday July 17 2018

Expressway contractors abusing environment around Entebbe

Expressway contractors abusing environment around Entebbe

A man cutting down a tree. Since the work for clearing the new road reserves started on Entebbe Road between Mpala and Goa’s road, residents of Katabi Town Council and Entebbe Municipal Council have suffered tremendously in terms of tree cover for beauty, shade, and environmental purposes. FILE PHOTO 

By Simon Peter

In respect to the above subject, I am writing as a concerned citizen and a resident of Entebbe Municipality. Since the work for clearing the new road reserves started on Entebbe Road between Mpala and Goa’s road, residents of Katabi Town Council and Entebbe Municipal Council have suffered tremendously in terms of tree cover for beauty, shade, and environmental purposes.

Contractors entrusted to do the work have over stepped their mandate, robbed, abused and looted trees as a business for timber and firewood.

Many trees clearly outside of road reserves have been cut down indiscriminately with a lot of arrogance and without care. A case in question was on July 13, where these contractors felled a Terminalia tree estimated to be more than 20 meters in height in front of Entebbe Victoria Mall.

This tree was clearly meters away from the road reserve. When approached by concerned citizens, the contractors had no clear answers to this effect. This prompted citizens to report the matter to Entebbe Police Station.

The OC station Entebbe responded, asked the same questions, but still there was no answer. The police confiscated the machines and timber as exhibit for further questioning and investigation.

A similar incident happened in early 2017 on Entebbe Road, when Nippon contractors harvested many trees mainly of timber value between Akright Stage and Garuga road on Entebbe Road in the name of clearing the road. Trees harvested were mainly Musizi, Terminalia and Acacia. This matter was reported to the Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA), and there was no satisfactory response.

In conclusion, it seems UNRA has either absconded from their responsibility of supervising contractors or there is connivance between UNRA staff and the contractors to harvest these tress for timber and firewood sales.
For God and My Country.

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