The Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Jacob Oulanyah, has urged the Ministry of Health to improve facilities in all hospitals along major highways in the country, following a fatal accident in Kiryandongo last Friday, killing over 20 people on spot and leaving others fighting for their lives as a result of serious injuries on their bodies.
“The emergency and intensive care units of Kawolo, Kiryandongo, Masaka and Mbarara hospitals among others should be improved and strengthened to function fully. Airlifting patients to Mulago Hospital is not only expensive but will not necessarily save lives,” he said yesterday.
Oulanyah called upon the Minister of Works with other stakeholders in the sector to organise a national roundtable that can be used to tackle some of the problems on the Ugandan roads.
“There should be a national roundtable dialogue lasting three days in the course of this year. I am hopeful that at the end of the dialogue, the citizens can say enough is enough and start a new chapter on the use of our roads,” he said.
As a remedy to road accidents, the Minister of State for Transport, Aggrey Bagiire, said that the ministry was planning amend several laws. “In a bid to reduce road carnage in Uganda, the ministry is currently undertaking to amend the Traffic and Road Safety Act, Cap.351,” he said, adding that the ministry plans to have speed governors installed all commercial vehicles and equipped with GPS trackers and recorders as well.
He said the ministry intends to have mandatory inspection of road worthiness and introduction of a Graduated Driving License, which will require drivers of commercial vehicles to undergo refresher courses and training.
The Chairperson Lango Parliamentary Group, Felix Okot Ogong ( Dokolo South), said that hospitals need upgrading to handle emergency cases better.
MP Odonga Otto (Aruu South) called for patriotism among Ugandans instead of stealing from accident victims. “The public was rushing to steal and drink beer and not saving lives of those who were hurt. A police officer at the level of Assistant Superintendent of Police was in the car yet the injured people needed his skills at that moment. What happened to patriotism?” He asked.
Cecilia Ogwal (FDC, Dokolo) said that government should end reactionary methods of responding to situations. “Why should the government react to issues after they have happened? The Road Safety Policy was passed four years ago; there is no mention of how the policy is working. What are we doing? When this happens they bring reactionary solutions,” she said.
Meanwhile Charles Angiro Kutmoi Abac Acon, MP Erute North constituency got involved in an accident around Karuma bridge this morning on his way from Lira to Kampala.
Reports say his Noah vehicle registered UAV 089 G rammed into a trailer in the early morning, leaving him in a critical condition with a broken leg; he was rushed to Kiryandongo hospital.
The head on collision with a trailer happened in the area of Karuma bridge while the MP was heading to Kampala and the Lorry moving opposite direction, it is reported that he was alone in the van
Sources at the scene say the occupants of the trailer fled and abandoned him, he was saved by good Samaritans traveling from Kampala direction who found him seated at the metal rails of the bridge and helped him to Kiryandongo hospital where he getting urgent medical attention for broken left leg.
It is said he was bleeding profusely but had obtained first aid at the scene. They had to wrap sticks to tie the broken leg in position before rushing him for treatment.