Eng. Levi Okello, the Manager Road Development under UNRA, says they have engaged with local leaders in Pader, Kitgum and Lamwo districts where the road passes to sensitize the community to protect the signage.
Kitgum district authorities and Uganda National Roads Authority-UNRA have raised a red flag against the theft of road signs on the newly built Acholibur–Masingo motorway. The 87.4km road stretch is part of Olwiyo-Gulu-Acholibur-Masingo highway that unlocks Northern Uganda to the commercial border with South Sudan.
The new road was constructed by Chinese firm, Chongqing International Construction Corporation-CICCO at Shillings 195 billion. However, Jackson Omona, the Kitgum District LC5 Chairperson, says some vandals have already stolen the road signs, which are essential safety features for road users.
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Allan Ssempebwa, the UNRA Media Relation Manager, says the theft of road signage is dangerous for road users.
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According to UNRA, the theft of road signs is common in
Dure near Acholibur trading center in Pader district; Madi-Opei in Lamwo district and Corner Mission in the outskirts of Kitgum Municipality where police arrested two suspected vandals
Eng. Levi Okello, the Manager Road Development under UNRA, says have engaged with the local leaders Pader, Kitgum and Lamwo district where the road passes to sensitize the community to protect the road signage.
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The vital road signs made out of metallic aluminum are targeted by thugs who sell them to welding and fabrication workshops, tin smiths as well as scrap metal dealers. In 2016, UNRA mooted a move to replace the attractive metals with concrete considered less attractive to thieves.
In December 2012, the then Works State Minister, Engineer John Byabagambi ordered police in the Kigezi region to shoot on sight all those found vandalizing road signs along the Kabale-Kisoro road.
He was speaking at the handover of road signs that had been recovered from resident's homes in a joint operation involving police and Uganda National Roads Authority.
The operation was prompted by President Yoweri Museveni following the theft of road signs on the newly built. Museveni tasked the Kisoro, Kisoro and police authorities to recover the stolen road signs before the end of 2012. Byabagambi noted that then that the road signs and reflectors are put in place for safety purposes but it was unfortunate that they were being vandalized by selfish people.