John Sabila John, Kikobero village LC I Vice-Chairperson and elder, says the damaged bridge had outlived its lifespan. He has asked the government to intervene immediately and save people from the kind of suffering they are going through.
According to officials, big swarms of locusts yesterday invaded Seseti village on Ngenge hills in Ngenge Sub County at about 4:00pm before relocating to Kacharasi and Hatari at the border of Bunambutye, Bwikhonge and Nabongo Sub Counties in Bulambuli district.
The rocks that warped on Monday afternoon have now split into particles which are now strewn across the road at a place called Nairobi in Kamu sub-county. As a result, the entire stretch of the road from Simu through Kamu to Kaseeremu has become impassable.
Colonel Twaha Kanyoma, who represented the commander Uganda People’s Defense Forces-UPDF Engineering Brigade, said that transportation of construction materials to the site has been hindered by the impassable roads caused by the heavy rains.
Residents say some of the water flows from the stone quarrying sites belonging to Kampala and Tororo cement factories and ditches that were left open after the excavation of murrum. Some of the ditches that were used as far as 1998 have now turned into man made lakes covering over 10 acres of land.
Peter Gusolo, a businessman said they spend 2days transporting merchandise from Mbale town to Bulambuli district. “It’s as if there is a deliberate delay to construct this road. Tractors came here and unearthed the roadsides, but no work is going on for close to four years," he said.
Beatrice Nabuyoga, a resident of Luzira village, Busiya parish in Bulambuli district and her bedridden husband have sheltered some of the victims in their home. Nabuyoga, a peasant farmer says her family decided to offer about 10 empty rooms in their home to host the landslide victims after seeing many of them suffering with nowhere to sleep.
John Magomu Maleza, the LC III chairperson Bulaago Sub County, says several people in his area are homeless. He says some of the homes were washed away by the landslides while others had their roofs blown off by heavy winds.
The ditches that were used to extract murram by road construction companies since 1998 have turned into man made lakes in the area. They are also breeding places for mosquitoes and a death trap for residents, especially children.
Hilary Onek, the Disaster Preparedness Minister says government is aware of the urgent need to relocate the affected household, adding that it is doing everything to ensure they are resettled in a safer place.