More than 100 road signs stolen on new Matugga-Semuto road - Daily Monitor

More than 100 road signs stolen on new Matugga-Semuto road

Thursday May 1 2014

Poles that originally had a sign post remain bare after suspected vandals

Poles that originally had a sign post remain bare after suspected vandals on Matugga-Semuto-Kapeeka road stole the road sign. District officials have called for the arrest of suspects. Photo by Dan Wandera 

By Dan Wandera

Nakaseke- Authorities in Nakaseke District are calling for quick investigation and arrest of people who recently vandalised more than 100 road signs on the new Matugga-Semuto-Kapeeka road, putting lives of both pedestrians and motorists at risk. Nakaseke District council speaker Enock Nyongole says stealing of road signs for whatever purpose is very dangerous for all road users and should be investigated.

“We are surprised that people are taking away the most valuable items on our new road. The signs are supposed to ensure safety for road users. We need to arrest the situation before it gets out of hand,” Mr Nyongole told the Daily Monitor on Monday.

The new road has several humps meant to check speeding motorists including several road bends which need road signs to guide the road users, Mr Richard Mavuuma, the district vice chairperson told the Daily Monitor.

According to UNRA communications manager Dan Alinange, the suspects target the aluminium which they use for different purposes making government lose billions of shillings in replacing the stolen road signs.

“We are currently spending about Shs1 billion each year in replacing the stolen road signs on different roads in the country. We have teamed up with police and some security personnel from the President’s office to track down the suspects. The vandalism on Matugga-Semuto-Kapeeka road is a recent development which we have started investigating,” Mr Alinange said.
UNRA is also conducting trials for new material which could be less attractive to people intending to steal aluminium road signs.

“The success of the new material which scientists have developed will be a big boost to our fight against road signs vandalism,” Mr Alinange said.

Other roads in the country where vandalism has been reported according to UNRA officials include the Kabale-Ntungamo road, Tororo-Mbale -Soroti road.

The suspects reportedly steal the aluminium sheet and abandon the poles because the poles have a concrete mixture which makes it useless for anybody intending to take it as a metal scrap for fabrication.

This is the very reason that the sign post poles still stand on Matugga-Semuto road, unlike the other roads which have had the road signs also vandalised, according to UNRA officials.