UNRA seeks Shs74b for rapid response

Friday November 8 2019

Uganda National Roads Authority (Unra)

Uganda National Roads Authority (Unra) executive director Allen Kagina. FILE PHOTO  

By Benjamin Jumbe

Uganda National Roads Authority (Unra) has asked the Ministry of Finance for Shs74b for emergency response following the destruction of infrastructure caused by heavy rain across several parts of the country.
Addressing journalists at the Unra headquarters in Nakawa Division, Kampala, yesterday, Ms Allen Kagina, the authority’s executive director, said the heavy rain had adversely affected the road infrastructure.

“We usually have some money set aside and equipment for emergency but in this instance, it has been more than anticipated and so we requested for financial support from Ministry of Finance so that we can reconnect and we are monitoring all the time to see the very vulnerable areas,” Ms Kagina said.

Ms Kagina said several areas have been flooded, and others washed away, and bridges on rivers Kafu and Sezibwa.
“We have our stations all over the country identifying where the most critical areas and washouts and restoring connectivity,” she added.
Ms Kagina urged the public to report any broken roads and bridges to the authority for appropriate response.

Floods also cut off a major road that links Soroti to Abim, Kotido and Kaabong forcing traders in Karamoja to drive extra miles through Moroto and Katakwi to get to Soroti.
They also washed away a bridge on a major road that links Kayunga District to Mukono.
When contacted about the Unra request, Mr Jim Mugunga, the Ministry of Finance spokesperson, said having such amounts of funds released takes a long process.

“I am not privy but if they have said it, then I have no reason to doubt them. However, there is a process that must be followed,” Mr Mugunga said
He added that Unra was familiar with the process before the money can be released.
“All that money cannot be an emergency, but they could be having emergency work they have to do because of the rain so that process will sort out all that,” Mr Mugunga said.