KAMPALA – The committee on Government Assurance and Implementation wants Uganda Railways should explain the absence of protection at the level crossing in Nakawa that led to the death of two Ugandans.
The Committee was interfacing with the Ministry of Works and the Uganda Railways Corporation (URC) who were appearing before the Parliamentary Committee on Government Assurance and Implementation chaired by Hon Joseph Ssewungu to answer questions regarding the rehabilitation of the meter Guage Railway.
The Vice chairperson of the committee Ssewungu asked Uganda Railways Corporation to provide a comprehensive report on the property and assets of the Railways, including the Nsambya and Luzira land.
The State Minister for works (transport) Fred Byamukama pledged that Government will ensure safety at all railway crossing levels by employing crossing-keepers, putting larger signs and guards separating the Rail and the road.
“How did Uganda Railways staff quarters turn into Malls and Arenas in Nsambya, where is Uganda Railways staff going to live?” Ssewungu asked Railway management.
Nakifuma County MP, Robert Ssekitoleeko asked the Uganda Railways Corporation if they have plans in the future to ensure that with a developed railway, Ugandans can live in Jinja, Gulu, Mbale , Mpigi among others and work within Kampala taking less than 2hrs on the rail.
On July 10, three people died after the car they were travelling in was hit by a train at the Level Crossing (railway) in Nakawa Division.
The MPs faulted the Railway Corporation for failing to have crossing-keepers and no warnings as one crosses the rail.
According to Ssewungu, in the early days locals knew the time a train would pass in an area, a worker was on ground keeping the level crossing area, and a physical barrier also existed separating the road and the rail.