Floods wash away bridges in Bugisu

Thursday December 12 2019
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Destroyed. The Resident District Commander of Manafwa, Mr Ahamada Washaki, inspects Buwagogo Bridge that was washed away by floods on December 6. PHOTO BY YAHUDU KITUNZI

The ongoing heavy rain in Bugisu Sub-region has washed away nearly 20 bridges on several roads connecting the sub-region to various districts, leaving travellers stranded.

The rivers that burst their banks due to the downpour include, Manafwa, Solokho, Tsutu, Namatala and Nabuyonga.

Some of the affected bridges include Buwagogo that connects Manafwa to Lwakhakha boarder.
The bridge on River Solokho was also swept away and so was Kufu Bridge that connects Bupoto to Magale in Namisindwa District.

Some traders yesterday said they were stranded with their merchandise that has perishables.
The Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA) said other bridges affected include Kufu in Manafwa District and Kiguli Bridge in Sironko District.
Bubulo-Bududa road has also been affected but remains mortorable while Naboa-Nabinada road has been affected by floods.

“We are to construct a temporally bridge and install culverts. Passengers must use other available routes. Our maintenance team is monitoring these sections and will intervene as soon as the water levels subside,” Mr Mark Ssali, the UNRA spokesperson, said.

Mr Jude Wamono, a businessman in Manafwa Town, asked government to help restore the affected bridges.
“Most of the bridges have been washed away by floods and we are now stuck. We request UNRA to intervene,” Mr Wamono said.

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Mr Fred Mafabi, another businessman in Sironko District, blamed the problem on shoddy work and appealed to government to repair the bridge immediately to enable residents take their agricultural produce to the market.

The Manafwa District chairperson, Mr Moses Musira, said: “We are doing badly and we request UNRA to rescue us. Our people are not accessing some parts of the district.”
The Resident District Commissioner of Manafwa, Mr Ahamada Washaki, said he is going to write to the line ministry for intervention.

The Chief Administrative Officer of Bududa District, Ms Tappy Namulondo, said they would love to fix the affected bridges but they do not have resources.
“We want to fix the bridges but we don’t have resources now. If we get funds, we shall work on them this year but if we fail, we shall work on them next year,” Ms Namulondo said.

Mr George Ssonko, the station manager of UNRA in Mbale, acknowledged that some bridges have been washed away.
“Our team assessed the damages of the bridges and we are waiting to put temporally bridge and culvert, so that people can cross. And as I speak now, procurement is ongoing under emergency fund,” Mr Ssonko said.

Mr Julius Mucunguzi, the head of communication in the Office of Prime Minister, said there are efforts being made to help people in affected areas.

tangurini@ug.nationmedia.com

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