Kampala — Police has retrieved the body of a Kalerwe market vendor, David Kinaawa who drowned in Kawaala channel five days ago.
The body was removed on Wednesday after residents blocked the section of the Northern By-pass between Kalerwe and Namungona, and charged fees from motorists to hire a private excavator.
Police which had come to remove barricades from the road had their attention drawn to the self-help work the residents had decided to embark on.
The residents said they had reported the matter to police, but with no responsive action. So they decided to collect sh300,000 to hire someone to look for the body.
"We contacted police the very day the incident happened but we did not receive any assistance until we mobilized ourselves to see how we could find the body of our fellow resident," an angry resident said.
The officer in charge of Kawempe police station, David Agaba, said police received information but had not confirmed the incident.
After re-opening the road, the police camped at the scene and called the fire brigade to remove the body from the water channel under a heavy morning downpour.
The search team battled the rain in an attempt to find the deceased, until they later did.
The deceased - David Kinaawa - left behind six children and a wife, and plied his trade at Kalerwe market as a vegetable vendor.
It is reported he drowned Friday last week at around 8:00pm as he crossed the channel on a wooden bridge. He was on his way home from work with his six-year old son, Erukan Mbarwa.
The young boy narrated that as he walked behind his father when crossing the tight wooden bridge, his old man slipped and fell as he looked on helplessly.
"Dad fell as I looked because I was moving behind him. I set an alarm for help but no one was coming until a few people heard me shout and they rushed to rescue him. Unfortunately the water had taken him already," Mbarwa recalled.
Proscovia Najjita, the widow, told New Vision that her husband left home as usual and was expected back home but was surprised to receive the depressing news from his son.
"I never believed my son until I rushed to the scene and I was surprised when I found that people had launched a search for him," she said.
The widow said of how helpless she feels now, with the breadwinner of the family gone. The responsibility of paying rent, educating and clothing the children now weighs down on her.
"I have lost direction in my life," she mourned. "The fact that I am a house-wife with six children in a rented house, I don't know what to do but I need some-one to rescue me from this situation."