Councillors in Hoima West Division, located within Hoima City, have voiced their concerns regarding the worsening condition of the area’s road infrastructure, urging the division mayor and town clerk to address the issue.
During a council meeting held at Kitara Tourism Square in Kikingo village, councillors from various wards expressed worries about the state of the roads in their respective areas. Ismail Sekyazi, representing Kihomboza ward, highlighted the poor condition of several roads, including Kihomboza No3 ring road, Bujwahya sunshine road, and Kihombaza-COU road, all of which have gone unrepaired for over three years.
These roads are now riddled with deep potholes, causing transportation difficulties. Despite repeated inclusion in the budget, no action has been taken to rectify the situation.
Francis Isingoma, councillor for Kiduma ward, similarly cited the deplorable state of roads in his area, such as Kibingo-Itara-Kibaryanga Kigabu-Kiduma road and Kyarugabu-Kirisa roads. He pointed out that despite the recent allocation of sh500 million for road funds, the city authority has not utilized the funds for road rehabilitation.
The poor road conditions are impeding the local population’s access to essential services, including healthcare, markets for agricultural products, and educational institutions. The community has made attempts to repair the roads collectively, but their efforts have proven insufficient given the scale of the issue. Additionally, the collapse of several bridges connecting various roads has further hampered movement between villages.
George Kirya, councillor for Kibingo ward, expressed his concern over the deteriorating road conditions in his area, listing Kyaduru road, Biryomu-Penina road, Kyakadongo-Itaraza-strive road, Padrock road, and Kasasa-Ruyanja road as among the roads in poor condition. He emphasized that the residents’ expectations of road repairs have not been met during their three-year tenure in leadership.
In frustration, Kirya threatened to boycott council meetings if the town clerk and mayor continued to neglect the road issue, as residents demand answers for the lack of progress.
Hoima West Division Mayor Robert Ruhigwa confirmed that a significant portion of the division’s roads are impassable, with approximately 90% of them in poor condition. He attributed this problem to heavy rainfall and insufficient funds for road rehabilitation, resulting from low tax revenue collection in the division. Ruhigwa mentioned that the division recently received sh60 million from discretionary development grants, which will be used to repair at least four roads once the rainy season subsides. Nevertheless, this amount is insufficient considering the extensive road network in disrepair. Ruhigwa also pointed out that the delay in releasing road funds for the first quarter exacerbated the situation.
City Engineer Bonny Kiiza, when contacted, confirmed that Hoima City had received UGX 500 Million out of the UGX 1 Billion road funds allocated to local governments for addressing road-related challenges. However, the city is unable to utilize these funds due to a lack of guidelines from the Ministry of Works and Transport.
Kiiza stated, “It is true the government released sh500 million in road funds to Hoima City, but we cannot use it because we are still waiting for the guidelines from the Ministry of Works and Transport.”
These delays and funding issues have left the councillors and the community of Hoima West Division frustrated by the ongoing deterioration of their road infrastructure.