The Kikuube District Local Government Chairman has noted with concern the need for the extension of special training for drivers working with sugar factories in Bunyoro Region, mid-western Uganda saying they have on many occasions been spotted in conflict with traffic rules and regulations resulting in road bloodbath.
Speaking at the Ministry of Works and Transport launch of a special training of drivers and riders at Kikuube district headquarters on Wednesday, Mr Peter Banura said many people including both adults and young children have either lost their lives or been maimed due reckless sugar factory drivers in particular, leading to suffering to a diversity of the affected people.
“We have recorded a number of accidents in Kikuube district with 98% of them caused by sugar factory drivers. If we extend those special training services to them at their workplaces and we try to sensitise them about the importance of traffic law and regulations adherence, it can assist us to reduce road crashes,” he observed.
The chairman attributed most accidents in the country in general to drivers’ negligence.
“Unqualified drivers and drunkenness are the main causes of accidents and the relevant district authorities are planning to invite and talk to drivers in the area and chat a way of how best we can highly reduce road crashes in Kikuube district and Bunyoro region as a whole because the number of people dying and being injured due to road accidents is scaring.”
Mr Banura revealed how he always receives complaints from people about challenges met to accessing driving permits.
At the ceremony, the Chairman Kikuube Town Council Boda-Boda Riders, Mr Richard Kugonza, urged the Ministry of Works and Transport to ensure that the price of permits is reduced to enable low income earners to get them at a cheaper price.
“We always ask the government to reduce the price of riding and driving permits so that even riders with low income can afford to buy them and have well qualified riders and drivers on the road and also create awareness on proper road usage in the fight against the rampant road accidents in the country in general,” he stated.
Mr Abel Kanyankole, the Chief Executive Officer Wendi Driving School that is implementing the training in coordination with the Ministry of Works and Transport, noted that most of the road accidents are intentional since they are caused by reckless drivers.
He said more is needed to re-equip drivers and riders with adequate information and knowledge about road signs right from the primary level in efforts to reduce road crashes in Uganda where road carnage has of late become rampant in that part of East Africa.
Mr Kanyankole urged and advised passengers to treasure their lives by not boarding vehicles beyond their licensed carrying capacity so that they can avoid unnecessary accidents caused by reckless drivers.
“We need to sensitise our drivers about the dangers of reckless driving and to train them about road signs because very many drivers are driving on roads but they don’t know the meanings of most road signs. That’s why we are losing very many people in road accidents.”
He urged the populace to report to the police any reckless drivers putting people’s lives in danger through over speeding, overloading and carrying passengers excessively.
The 10-day special training and express driving permit issuance and renewal aims to have well qualified drivers and riders on the road as an avenue of reducing road crashes in Bunyoro region and Uganda in general.