The State Minister for Works, Musa Ecweru.

Members of Parliament have called on Government to improve the road infrastructure in the country if road carnage is to reduce.

The legislators were on Thursday, 16 December 2021, debating a motion urging the government to bolster efforts geared at promoting road safety.

The motion moved by Hon Alex Ruhunda (NRM, Fort Portal Central Division) was in commemoration of the National Road Safety Week, which was held between 13 and 17 December 2021.

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As the MPs debated the motion, there were calls for road user discipline, accountability of motorists, installation of adequate road signs and improvement of roads.

Hon Jovanice Twinobusingye, the Woman MP Kiruhura, said the biggest challenge Uganda has is the poor road network which she attributed to a low budget.

“The challenge that we have are bad roads. We cannot talk of safety when we still have very poor roads. If we want our roads to improve, we must improve on the budgets of the Ministry of Works and Transport,” she said.

Hon Agnes Atim (NRM, Amolatar Woman Representative) said there is no supervision of roads compared to the past when road gangs were used to report any incidences.

She added that stopping vandalism of road signage and equipment is one way of preventing accidents.

Hon Brahan Ezama Siraji (NRM, Aringa County) cited bad roads, incomplete works and overloading as the reason for the high rate of road accidents.

“They take too long to complete some projects. In my district, there is a bridge in a place called Jure, it has taken over three years for it to be completed,” he said.

Hon Fred Kayondo, the Mukono County South MP, pointed at the quality of some roads that are currently being constructed saying they are substandard with potholes developing barely a year after completion.

“They have just completed a road in Mukono South that connects to Jinja; it is not even a year but it has developed potholes. At the end of the day, we are having people losing lives on these roads,” he said.

Hon Jonathan Ebwalu, the MP Soroti West Division, proposed enactment of a law to regulate road users, especially Boda Boda riders.

“We need to regulate the Boda Boda. In Uganda, anyone can buy a motorbike in the afternoon at 2:00 pm and at 3:00 pm he is a boda boda rider,” he said adding that “government needs to establish a government driving and riding school.”

The State Minister for Works, Musa Ecweru, said there is a comprehensive strategy in place to address road accidents and traffic challenges. He promised to present the policy to Parliament.

The Speaker of Parliament, Jacob Oulanyah, told MPs that each of them has a role to play in supervision of roads and infrastructure by virtue of leading the road committees in their districts.

“All of you are leaders of road committees in your districts, so the people responsible in ensuring that the works that are being done are done properly, are you. We should make sure that the works that are being done save lives,” Oulanyah said.

He hastened to add that if Members of Parliament leave that duty to other people, MPs will be blamed for bad road works.

Parliament later passed the motion urging government to strengthen efforts for promoting road safety in the country.

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