Floods cut off Kyabakuza-Sembabule Road

Floods cut off Kyabakuza-Sembabule Road
A vehicle struggles to navigate the treacherous section of the road cutoff by flood

Residents along the Kyabakuza-Misanvu-Mateete-Kaliiro road are facing severe difficulties as the route remains impassable due to flooding, leaving them stranded without access to essential services and transportation.

The road, a crucial artery connecting Masaka, Lwengo, Bukomansimbi, and Sembabule districts, has become inundated, rendering it unusable for vehicles and prompting confusion among residents who are now navigating through homes and forests to find alternative routes.

The situation has led to a makeshift economy where resourceful youngsters are offering rides across the flooded sections of the road for a fee, providing a lifeline for those desperate to continue their journeys.

“Everyone we carry across at a cost of Shs2,000 and since this morning I have earned Shs50,000," a local who turned himself into a makeshift human carrier for brisk business, said.

Speaking on behalf of the affected residents, Mawogola South representative Gorreth Namugga expressed disappointment in the lack of action from the Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA), noting that promises made by President Museveni during the 1996 campaign to improve the road infrastructure in the area remain unfulfilled.

Locals make brisk money carrying persons across the flooded section of the road

“President Museveni promised us a tarmac road but since then they only put marram on this useful road in our area. So, now we no longer need marram, we need tarmac," Namugga sid.

The 70-km road, vital for commerce and connectivity in the region, had seen some repairs funded by UNRA through AZU Properties Limited and Impulse Solutions.

However, these efforts have proven insufficient, with the road succumbing to flooding and collapsing barriers, exacerbating the challenges faced by locals.

UNRA spokesperson Allan Ssempebwa acknowledged the dire situation, saying the Authority has yet to disburse funds to the contractor responsible for the road's construction and maintenance.

Mr Ssempebwa assured that discussions are ongoing with the contractor to address the issue promptly.

However, if the contractor fails to act, UNRA is prepared to utilise its limited resources to initiate repairs and restore access to the affected communities.

As residents continue to grapple with the consequences of the flooded road, there is a growing sense of urgency for immediate action from both government authorities and relevant stakeholders to alleviate the plight of those stranded and prevent further disruptions to livelihoods and economic activities in the region.

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