By Fred Turyakira
Five people coming from a burial were killed Sunday night when their omnibus vehicle collided head-on with a truck in Nyakisharara along Mbarara-Ibanda highway.
Some 21 others sustained several injuries in the gruesome accident.
Police reported that the driver of the omnibus failed to negotiate a corner, sending the vehicle into a collision course with an oncoming Canter truck at around 9pm.
The omnibus of registration number UAQ 019Z that is licensed to carry a maximum of 14 passengers had 26 occupants at the time of the accident.
The truck, registered under UAM 394L was carrying matooke (green bananas) from Bwibwera in Mbarara to Kampala.
Patrick Mungasa, the south-western regional traffic officer made the confirmation.
He said the occupants of the truck steered by Willy Kyeyune were not injured.
Kyeyune sustained some injuries and was rushed to Mbarara hospital as the unharmed truck occupants continued their journey to Kampala.
The dead and those injured were staff from Marere Primary School and Biguri S.S. in Kamwenge district.
The driver of the omnibus, David Kyeyune – also the owner of the ill-fated vehicle – died on his way to Mbarara hospital, Police said.
Rev. Emmanuel NimusiimaBwebare, 50, a chaplain at Biguri S.S. in Kamwenge died on spot.
A few others identified are: Wilber Ndahendekire, 36; Patrick Mutambuzi, 50, a security guard at Marere Primary School and Gabito Barisima, 40.
All the above-named were residents of Biguri in Kamwenge.
The injured included Jonas Nuwamanya, 21, the tout of the minibus; Specioza Tumwebaze, 24; Deborah Arinaitwe, 28 and her one-month-old daughter, Anitah Kobusingye.
Two UPDF soldiers – Pte.AggreyKawesiKawesiga and Pte.ObboNafutari from 2nd Division Army headquarters – were among the survivors.
Teachers from Marere Primary who are admitted at Mbarara hospital include the deputy headteacher of Biguri S.S.and his wife, Patience Arinanye, 26.
Arinanye is also a nurse at Biguri Health Centre IV.
Other teachers that survived were: Edson Nuwagaba, Ronald Magezi, 28; Benson Mucunguzi, 48; Bernard Natuhwera, Edson Namanya, 30; ObedNuwamanya, 30 and Robert Tumusiime.
Survivors who are not teachers included Mercelina Kyarimpa, 40; one-and-a-half-year-old Christon Akampurira, Judith Namanya, 30, a tailor in Biguri Trading centre, Seth Mugume Bagonza, Wilber Tumwebaze and his wife Specioza Tumwebaze, 28.
Both Bagonza’s legs were broken and our reporter found him wriggling in pain in the intensive care.
Arinanye and Magezi had injuries on the head and chest, and had difficulty in breathing.
Police said the cause of the accident was a human factor. The vehicle carried more than the legally accepted number of passengers, coupled with over-speeding.
The wreckage of the omnibus was towed and is now parked at Mbarara police station.