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Fort Portal Residents Demonstrate Over Poor Saaka Road

According to residents, the seven-kilometre road had become a health hazard with a lot of dust, potholes, blocked trenches, and deep gullies. The road connects Fort Portal town to Harugongo and Kichwamba sub counties and also leads to government-owned Mountains of the Moon University and Katojo Prison
Kabarole Deputy RDC speaking to Police officers after residents dug trenches across the Saak raod protesting its poor state.

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Traffic along Saaka Road in West Division, Fort Portal Municipality came to a standstill on Friday as residents demonstrated over the poor state of the road.  

According to residents, the seven-kilometre road had become a health hazard with a lot of dust, potholes, blocked trenches and deep gullies. The road connects Fort Portal town to Harugongo and Kichwamba sub counties and also leads to the government-owned Mountains of the Moon University and Katojo Prison.

As a result residents blocked the road with logs, big stones and dug deep trenches across it as a way of showing their dissatisfaction. They also carried placards asking motorists to find alternative routes.  

Karim Gadafi, a Boda boda rider at Kagote stage said that due to the poor state of the road, accidents along it were also becoming rampant while during rainy seasons it becomes impassable.  

Paul Kamya, one of the demonstrators, cited pozzolana dealers as the contributing factor to the terrible state of the road. He said that as they leave Harungogo Sub County with  minerals, they use heavy trucks that damage the road and never care to repair it.

//Cue in: “Kati nze nkiwagidde…

Cue out… nga bwokilaba.”//

The situation was only quelled by the Kabarole District Police Commander – DPC Jamal Kanyesige and the Deputy Resident District Commissioner, Festus Bandeba, who rushed to the scene and arrested one unidentified security guard who is alleged to have witnessed the demonstration and failed to notify police.

Kanyesigye said that from the information they have gathered so far, the demonstration was politically motivated. Bandeba condemned the act, saying that even though the road was in a poor state, there was no need to destroy it further.

//Cue in: “I actually shudder…

Cue out… of negative elements.”//  

Richard Muhumuza, the West Division LC III chairman said that the road is supposed to be maintained by Uganda National Roads Authority - UNRA, and that as leaders they have always contacted them but in vain.  

The UNRA Roads Maintenance Engineer, Herbert Kyalisima, said that they are soon repairing the road.

//Cue in: “This road in…

Cue out… years in prison.”//

But the residents have vowed to continue with the protests if the road is not repaired within the shortest time possible.