An unidentified man crosses a river on a log before rain washed it away after destroying the bridge in Masindi in September this year.
Torrential rains have washed away a bridge that connects Budongo and Karujubu Sub-counties in Masindi District.
This has left residents of Kapeeka and Bulyango villages in Budongo and Karujubu sub-counties respectively cut off from accessing services from the two neighbours.
Speaking during a meeting convened by Recreation for Development and Peace (RDP) Uganda at Kapeeka village, Sarah Ayesiga, the Budongo Sub-county Community Monitoring Group (CMG) chairperson revealed that the bridge was constructed by the residents of Kapeeka 1, 2 &3 villages in the 1990s.
She said this was done to enable students to access Bulyango primary school in Karujubu Division and also access markets in the neighbourhood.
Kapeeka 1, 2 & 3 villages in Budongo sub-county do not have any primary school constructed there, forcing pupils to cross the river to access educational services in the neighbouring sub-county.
During the meeting, Ayesiga disclosed that the bridge was washed away in September this year making it hard for the residents to cross over to the other side of the river.
She revealed that most pupils who cross from Budongo sub-county to Bulyango primary school in Karujubu Division missed their end of year examinations since it was risky wading through the raging waters of the river.
“Some pupils from Budongo sub-county have not written their final exams for this year because any attempt to cross the river is risky to one’s life. Even some economic activities have slackened since residents from the two sub-counties can’t freely transact business because of the broken bridge,” she said.
Ayesiga added that the local community improvised a log to temporarily fix the bridge but it was also washed away by the speeding water.
Residents who attended the meeting agreed and urged the Masindi district leadership to engage Kinyara Sugar Ltd to intervene and fix the bridge as one of its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) since they are also major users of the road.
Kenneth Nyendwoha Kiiza, the Budongo Sub-county LC 3 chairman acknowledged that the bridge was washed away, thus crippling services.
“The washing away of the bridge is a security threat to the area since it has cut off residents from accessing markets and health and educational services,” he said.
Nyendwoha said the matter was beyond the authorities of Budongo sub-county since fixing the bridge required a lot of funds and heavy machinery.
He, thus, asked the Masindi district local government to intervene.
Titus Ariyo, the district councillor for Budongo sub-county told the meeting that the district was planning to act.
RDP’s Morris Ogeny who chaired the meeting said the convention aimed to bring the matter to the leaders’ attention for action.