Uganda: City Flood Victims Count Losses

(file photo).

Kampala — Residents affected by the Sunday morning downpour that triggered devastating floods in various parts of the city spent yesterday scooping or draining out water from their submerged houses.

Mr Stephen Kibuuka, a resident of Lufuka Zone in Entebbe, used a pump to drain out the water but his efforts were frustrated.

He said water from neighbours' houses kept filling his low-lying compound.

"We have failed to access the house. Yesterday (Sunday), we had to set up a bonfire and sleep outside. I do not expect to sleep in the house until Wednesday at the earliest," Mr Kibuuka said.

When this newspaper revisited the flooded homes, most of the affected residents were still removing property from their houses and cleaning up.

Mr Isaac Kayondo, a teacher at Martyrs High School Zzana, said he lost all his beddings, electronics and vital documents.

"It was extremely inundating. The water levels were halfway the sitting room wall. My daughter, who had a child, had to leave because she could not stand the mess," he said.

Mr Richard Kanyike, who had to spread chicken on the roof of his brooder on Sunday, said he lost more than 1,200 birds.

"I had more than 2,000 birds but I am now left with about 600. We had to bury some birds, the neighbours took away others. All the beddings are gone, the electronics were destroyed. I lost more than Shs10m," he said.

Asked about the extent of the damage, Mr Isma Tabalanule, the councillor for Makindye East, said they are not sure about the number of those affected, but added that they have always warned them against staying in wetlands.

"People do not listen to orders. They build in swamps, others have built on the drainage channels. Even when we want to unblock the drainage, we do not have where to pass or dump the silt," he said in a telephone interview.

City plan

Mr Erias Lukwago, the Kampala Lord Mayor, said they have a city drainage master plan which requires about Shs800b that was approved last week. He said the money would be used to construct seven major channels in the city, including Lubigi, Nakivubo, Kinawataka, Kansanga, Nalukolongo, Ggaba, Nalubaga, Walutumbe, Mayanja, Kalidubbi and Mayanja North.

Mr Lukwago said although the World Bank has already provided the money, government is yet to provide funds to compensate the project affected persons.

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