Locals alarmed by reckless motorists on Mawanda road in Kampala

Locals alarmed by reckless motorists on Mawanda road in Kampala
Efrance Mukasa the head teacher of New Bethany Nursery school says the 1.9km road is very busy and yet has no gazetted crossing points, something that makes it risky for children who go to school every day. Courtesy Photo.

Some people who live and work along Mawanda Road in Kampala have raised concern what they call reckless use of the road by motorists.

The residents and business people talk of speeding by both drivers and motorcyclists without care for other users of the narrow road that stretches from Kamwokya to Kalerwe, connecting to Gayaza road.

According to Anna Kitimbo, a teacher at Olive Tree Nursery school, located along Mawanda Road, the motorists don’t respect people who are put on the road by the school in order to help the children cross to and from school.

Speaking to our reporter, Kitimbo says the motorists pay little attention as they drive at high speed into a corner where the school is located. The school has to constantly station people in front of the gate to regulate traffic and help children cross the road.

Efrance Mukasa the head teacher of New Bethany Nursery school says the road is very busy and yet has no gazetted crossing points, something that makes it risky for children who go to school every day.

Mukasa points out the fact that the road is narrow and lacks pavements or walk-ways, putting the lives of pedestrians at risk.

Charles Mwesigwa, a businessman at Mawanda road told this publication that one has to compete for space with vehicles and motorcycles, especially in the morning and evening rush hours.

ASP Moses Acaye, the Officer in Charge of Operations at Mawanda Road Police Station, says at least five accidents have been reported since the beginning of the year, describing one as very serious involving a commuter taxi.

Stephen Sande, the Officer in Charge Traffic at Kira Road police Station told this publication that his worst fears are about the vulnerable pedestrians who do not have pavements to walk on. He also blames the motorists for what he called recklessness on Mawanda road.

Sande adds that the police are in talks with the Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) to improve on the situation on the road.

He further explained that because of the poor road design, there are always traffic hold-ups in the morning and evening hours necessitating deployment of traffic police personnel.

Mawanda road is one of the roads yet to be expanded to accommodate the heavy traffic in Kampala. Until the late 1990s, the 1.9km stretch was one of suburban roads with light traffic.

This has, however, changed progressively over the past 15 years as the area became popular for both residence and business. It now boasts of schools, supermarkets, offices and residential houses. It is also popular for motorists who use it as an access road connecting to Kyebando, Kawempe, Gayaza among other areas.

KCCA has over the last three years been maintaining and expanding roads in the city including Kira Road, Bakuli-Nakulabye road and Makerere Hill road among others.

In the 2017/2018 budget, KCCA is allocated 280.8 billion Shillings under the Kampala Institutional and Infrastructure Development Project (KIIDP) phase two funded by the World Bank.

It is not clear if Mawanda Road will be on KCCA’s to-do list considering that the city authority’s total budget was slashed to 337.39 billion Shillings, down from Shillings 561.33 billion.

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