Two deaths, two miscarriages, and two chopped limbs in the last three months have triggered protests over poor Bamburi Mwisho-Utange road.
The residents blame the poor state of the road for the tragic incidents in the area saying a group of thugs has been taking advantage of the curfew to attack their victims knowing help will not be forthcoming soon.
The road, according to the residents, has been neglected for long.
Somoe Ali, a resident, said she has had to help two women who had miscarriages while using the road because of the bumpy nature.
Chengo Saro, Palestina Stage Boda Boda Chairperson said the road has made them incur huge losses due to the frequent breakdown of their motorcycles.
“We lose business because some of our clients fear using Boda Bodas because, honestly, we usually fall down with them,” said Saro.
The residents blamed Kisauni MP Ali Mbogo for the poor state of the road saying he has not been pushing the government to repair the road.
Muslims for Human Rights rapid response Officer Francis Auma said the residents have a right to proper roads because they pay taxes.
He said political leaders have been using the road to earn votes.
“They promise heaven and deliver hell. This is a road that is used by a deputy governor every day because he lives in Utange,” said Auma.
However, MP Mbogo linked the protests to a political witch-hunt against him.
He said the dilapidated section of the road is a 3km stretch which he acknowledges has been in bad shape for quite a while.
“The road is being worked on although the progress is slow,” said Mbogo.
The area MP said the road is being worked on although the progress is slow due to the payment issues from the national government
He said the contract for the major rehabilitation of the whole about 15km road from Serena in Shanzu to Jocham Hospital in Kisauni was awarded two years ago.
The last time there has been routine maintenance on the road was before he became MP during the late Karisa Maitha’s reign as MP before 2004, Mbogo claimed.
[Kisauni MP Ali Mbogo (hands-on waist) inspecting roads within Kisauni. Photo/courtesy].
The works included re-carpeting of the road, doing a proper drainage system, and putting up street lights.
He said the works stopped because the contractor had not been paid the about Sh270 million owed to him by the national government for the works he did.
“He raised the first certificate after some of the works but was not paid and he had to use his own money. He raised two more certificates but was not paid and that is when he stopped,” said Mbogo.
However, Mbogo said has been pushing the national government for the last two weeks to pay the contractor and the government finally paid him Sh49.8 million.