Heavy rains sweep away Amuru bridge, hundreds stranded


Locals stand on what remains of the bridge on River Unyama in Amuru. Photo by WIlly Chowo.

AMURU. Already reeling from the after effects of the fight over land in Kololo a heavy downpour last night in Amuru District contrived to leave hundreds of people stranded as the only bridge in Atiak Sub-County collapsed.

The heavy rain washed away a bridge at River Unyama connecting Amuru Lamwo and Gulu districts respectively, from Okidi parish in Atiak.

Area LC III councillor for Okidi Parish, Michael Okema told PML Daily that many famers are stuck with produce on both sides of the roads as they can neither access their gardens nor the market.

Okema has appealed to government for immediate intervention as the residents there are in dire need of assistance.

Unyama Bridge is about 7 miles east of Atiak trading centre along the highway to South Sudan.

The bridge which was built with vehicles of low tonnage in mind had gradually been weakened by heavy trucks carrying charcoal and logs en route to Kampala

Its collapse has also cut off the residents from Okidi primary school, Okidi health Centre III and Okidi market.
Atiak Sub County chairman Wilfred Baguma Odiya said work has been paralysed at Okidi Health Centre

The downpour also washed away two other bridges; Pida Bridge that connects Okidi and Palaro (in Amuru and Gulu ) and Akwir Bridge that connects Akweri and Okidi.

Amuru District chairman Michael Lakony says he has written to the Uganda National Road Authority regional office in Gulu for immediate response because the road is under their jurisdiction.

He said the bridge is just two years old and was a strong structure which would not have collapsed if heavy vehicles were not using it.

The downpour which started at around 2 a.m. overnight Monday till today, 9 a.m. was experienced almost throughout the entire northern Region. Such was the volume of water, traders at Elegu, on the border with South Sudan, fear that the market could flood following a rise in water level.



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