32 killed on Kampala-Gulu highway in three months

Sunday March 24 2019

Residents of Lukomera village look at the

Residents of Lukomera village look at the wreckage of a taxi involved in an accident that claimed six lives at Lukomera village on Kampala-Gulu highway on March 22, 2019. PHOTO BY DAN WANDERA  

By DAN WANDERA

Luweero. The death of six people on Friday night in an accident in Luweero District brought the death toll on Kampala-Gulu Highway between January and March, to 32.
The residents on the 275km- stretch have, however, blamed among others the lack of humps at the 13 major blackspots, police authorities, Uganda National Roads Authority (Unra) engineers and reckless driving for every accident.

The Friday accident came after Members of Parliament and local government leaders from the greater Luweero districts met Unra officials at Nimrod Hotel in Luweero Town, and tasked them to erect humps at the blackspots on the busy Kawempe-Kafu road section of the highway in order to reduce accidents.
Ms Margaret Komuhangi, the Nakasongola District woman MP, tasked Unra to explain the criteria used to allocate and erect road humps because their appeal to have road humps erected on the highway that has become “a massacre highway” had not been considered.

Records from the Savana regional police traffic office indicate that about 32 people have lost their lives, with more than 120 people injured on the road since the year began.
Three people were killed in a grisly car accident on the Kampala-Gulu highway on New Year’s Day and in February, four people died on the spot, while 48 others sustained injuries in another accident involving a Link Bus.
The accident occurred in Nakasongola District on the Kampala-Gulu highway. In May last year, 23 people died in an accident involving a bus belonging to Gaagaa Bus Company on the same road.

Appeal to road users
Mr Jimmy Adwek, the Unra central region manager, explained that the authority is overwhelmed by the number of requests for road humps, adding that “It is also true that the Kampala –Gulu Road was never reconstructed but renovated in line with the old road design, which possibly explains the narrow sections.”
“As we consider the option of erecting road humps, we also appeal to the road users to drive responsibly. Road humps may not stop the accidents, but responsible driving is very critical as we forge away forward,” Mr Adwek cautioned.
The latest accident, which occurred at about 9pm, left eight people seriously injured in a head-on collision at Lukomera Village. The accident happened when a privately-owned minibus had a head-on collision with a Fuso truck.

The Savana Region police spokesperson, Mr Paul Kangave, told Sunday Monitor that the injured people were taken to Bishop Asili Hospital, Luweero Health Centre in Luweero Town while and others were referred to Kiwoko Hospital in Nakaseke District.
Mr Kangave said preliminary police investigations point to reckless driving by the minibus driver.
Police had by press time only identified two of the deceased people; Shafiq Kigozi (34) and Isma Naminya, both residents of Wobulenzi Town in Luweero District.

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