Uganda: Two Killed, Roads Cut Off As Rain Batters Lango

5 December 2019

Two people have been confirmed dead as heavy rain continues to batter Lango Sub-region.

Scovia Okecha and her 11-year-old son only identified as Emmanuel were struck by lightning in Abalu Village, Omoro Sub-county in Alebtong District on Sunday.

Mr Robert Okullo, the sub-county chairman, said the lightning struck the family twice during a light shower.

Authorities and road users said the extreme weather has caused flooding in many districts in Lango. In Apac, Otuke and Oyam districts, for instance, several communities have been cut off as major access roads in the areas remain flooded.

Mr Ronald Okello, a driver said the road linking Ojwii Trading Centre to Aleka Sub-county and Ojwii to Otara Trading Centre, all in Oyam District, have been cut off by flood water.

"We are now operating at a loss because the fuel is first of all very costly. Secondly, vehicles always get stuck on the way and when we try to raise the transport fare, people refuse to pay," he said.

The chairperson of Chegere Sub-county in Apac District, Mr Robert Atim, said hailstorm on Monday razed down crops in three villages of Acanpii, Akwoyo 'A' and Akwoyo 'B" in Kidilani Parish. He said crops such as simsim (sesame), cassava, maize and soybean have been destroyed.

In Dokolo and Otuke, farmers said sesame, beans and sunflower have started to rot in the gardens.

"I had expected to get at least 10 bags of sesame this season but all my hope is lost because of the extreme weather," Mr Daniel Ojok Aruca, the chairperson of Okwang Sub-county in Otuke District, said.

Mr Ojok said floods have cut off the road from Barjobi Parish to Okwang Trading Centre. This, he said, has affected the people from Abim, Agago, Kaabong and Kotido districts that use the road as an alternative route. "Most of the district roads in Otuke are now in a sorry state but I cannot blame the government because they have given us road equipment. The challenge is with the district leaders who are too slow to respond to emergency," he said.

In Oyam, motorists are now accessing the district headquarters through Loro and Agulurude, according to the district information officer, Mr Fred Aremo.

The other access roads that connect Iceme to Oyam Town Council and Minakulu to Oyam Town Council have all become impassable, he added.

Daily Monitor has established that heavy rain has washed away all the culverts at Okole Bridge, rendering the road from Amii Corner-Ibuje in Apac to Kamdini in Oyam impassable. An access road which connects Atigolwok Parish to Anyambazi Parish in Akokoro Sub-county is cut off, Apac secretary for works Charles Opur De'Apac has said.

The road that businesspersons use to access Ayago market via Olelpek in Apac has also been cut off, he added.

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