Stalled Bridge Works Irk Kyotera Residents Top story

2105 Views Kyotera, Uganda

In short
Annet Nabaggala, the Kyotera District Engineer, Rakai is meant to complete the bridge and officially hand it over to Kyotera. She however, says the construction work stalled mysteriously paralyzing transport in the area.

The stalled construction of Kyakatagwa Bridge along Kyotera-Mutukula highway has irked residents of Kabira sub-county in Kyotera district. The bridge is just 3kms from Kyakonda junction along Kyotera-Mutukula highway. It crosses over R. Naludugavu.  It is the link between Kyakatagwa, Kasaka, Kyotera town and Kakuuto County.
 
 
Floods swept the bridge in 2016 making it difficult for residents, traders, and transporters to cross to either side of the road. Uganda National Roads Authority-(UNRA disbursed more than Shillings 200 million to Rakai district in the first quarter of the 2017/2018 financial year to reconstruct the bridge. The construction work started in August 2017 and was meant to be completed within four months.
 
Annet Nabaggala, the Kyotera District Engineer, Rakai is meant to complete the bridge and officially hand it over to Kyotera. She however, says the construction work stalled mysteriously paralyzing transport in the area. Currently, the residents of Kyakatagwa and Kasaka villages have installed a temporarily bridge to help them cross the river.  The bridge can only be used by bicycles and light motorcycles.
 
 
They fault the district for failing to pile pressure on Rakai to complete the bridge works. George Bakireke, the Kabira sub-county councilor, says transport costs have since doubled because transporters use distant routes. He argues that the bridge was a shortcut for residents from different communities.
 
 
Bakireke argues that the failure to work on the bridge have affected access to major markets, banks, health centers and schools. Roselyn Nakalule, one of the residents of Kyakatagwa village, says she spends Shillings 8000 to reach Kyotera town using distant routes yet it used to cost about Shillings 5000 before the collapse of the bridge. 

Grace Nagawa, a resident of Kasaka, says several expectant women have failed to access antenatal and postnatal services in time. She also notes that farmers can hardly ferry their produce to the market in time since trucks cannot cross the river. Martha Nalubega, an employee at Kasaka Child Development Project, explains that the makeshift bridge has on many occasions been washed away by floods but still replaced.

 
She says her colleague nearly drowned in the river when his motorcycle veered off the narrow bridge and plunged into the river. He was saved by bystanders who were waiting to cross the river but the motorcycle sunk and was retrieved days after. Martin Taremwa, the Children's Ministry Coordinator - Kasaka Child Development Project, says their operations have been affected since the bridge collapsed. 

He says it used to cost them Shillings 2000 to get to Kyotera-Mutukula highway but the transport has more than doubled. According to Taremwa, the construction works on the stalled bridge are substandard, arguing that the bridge will not last even when completed. Unidentified people have since stolen some of the construction materials at the bridge site.
 

Henry Wangi, the Rakai District Engineer has earlier on claimed that they completed the bridge and handed it over to Kyotera. He however, made a u turn, saying the works were stopped due to the torrential rainfall, which sparked off floods that affected the work.  He says they will soon resume the construction work and hand over the bridge to Kyotera district once they are done.