Unidentified thugs have
vandalized an incinerator that was built on the banks of River Mpanga in Fort
Portal to burn waste and prevent it from ending up in the river. King Oyo
Nyimba Kabamba Iguru Rukidi IV of Tooro Kingdom commissioned the incinerator on
Wednesday last week.
This was the third part
of King Oyo’s campaign dubbed “Save River Mpanga Now” that he launched in May
this year. During the Commissioning, Anthony Kalyegira, the Director
Environment Affairs in Tooro kingdom, noted that the incinerator would help
destroy all the waste that can’t be recycled but is very harmful to the river.
He explained that over Shillings
1 million was spent on its construction. However, by Monday
morning, the incinerator was no more. Our reporter visited the site this
morning and found the incinerator vandalized with its metallic door, chimney
and other materials missing.
According to Kalyegira, the information he had received points
scrap dealers who wanted the metallic door, its frame, chimney pipe and wire
mesh for financial gain.
He suspects that the Fort Portal Municipality
technical staff and political leaders could be behind the destruction because
they have been gaining financially from waste management an didn’t warm up to the
idea of the incinerator.
Vincent Mugume, the Deputy Information Minister Tooro
Kingdom, condemned the act and asked security agencies to find the culprits.
//Cue in: “Nk’Obukama ntukyena ekikorwa…
Cue out… omubikaro byabo.”//
But Kalyegira discloses that he will not give up on saving
River Mpanga, adding that he will ensure the kingdom establishes another bigger
incinerator on Kingdom land in Bukwali and fence it off to protect it from
Fort Portal Mayor, Rev Willy Kintu Muhanga rubbished claims
that leaders were against the incinerator or could be behind its destruction,
saying that if they didn’t support the idea, they wouldn’t allow its
construction in the first place.
River Mpanga flows from the Rwenzori Mountains and crosses Kabarole,
Kyenjojo and Kamwenge districts and then feeds into Lake George. It is a
major source of water for National Water and Sewerage Cooperation - NWSC in
these districts, and King Oyo has been pushing for its protection and its