Delayed Completion of Kaguta Bridge Irks Leaders

3376 Views Lira, Uganda

In short
Francis Okello, a resident of Abia trading center in Alebtong district says the failure to complete the bridge forces them to trek long distances to access market for their farm produce.

 The delayed completion of the construction of the Shillings 1.2 billion Kaguta Bridge in Agweng Sub County has irked Lira district officials. In 2012, government contracted Coil Uganda Limited, a private firm to construct Kaguta Bridge, which crosses over River Moroto following a presidential pledge in 2004 during the burial of more than 300 Barlonyo massacre victims.

 
The proposed Kaguta Bridge is expected to serve as the main link between Barlonyo memorial site in Lira and Abia memorial site in Alebtong district. However, to date the construction of the bridge is yet to be completed. Now, Lira District officials want the Works Ministry to investigate the delayed construction works.

 
 
Emmanuel Mwaka Lutukumoi, the acting Lira Resident District Commissioner says despite money being released for the construction work, the project has stalled. "Kaguta Bridge project has been turned into a conduit to swindle government funds. We are aware some officials in the ministry are part of the group sabotaging the construction work so as to continue eating public money, he said.

 
According to Lutukumoi, the contractor has been hiding under the cover of too much rainfall to complete the work, but there hasn't been any rainfall since the year begun and construction work hasn't resumed. "I have written several letters to the Works Ministry for intervention but to date they have remained silent on the matter, now we want the president to intervene," said.
 

 
George Okello Ayoo, the Lira District LC V vice chairperson, equally shares his disappointment over the delayed completion of the Bridge. He says the failure to complete the bridge has affected cross border economic activities. Francis Okello, a resident of Abia trading center in Alebtong district says the failure to complete the bridge forces them to trek long distances to access market for their farm produce.
 
 
He appeals to the authorities to fast track the completion of the bridge works to ease movement in the area. Coil Engineers couldn't be reached for a comment since their whereabouts are unknown.