By Chris Mugasha
Residents of Kitagata subcounty in Sheema district have asked the Government to intervene and save the Kitagata Hot Spring from degradation.
They said the spring might be extinct if the activities threatening it are not stopped. Residents said construction activities on the Ishaka- Kitagata-Kagamba road have greatly affected the hot spring and accused Dott Services, the company working on the road, of not doing enough to protect it from being degraded.
Nazario Bishanga, the overseer of the hot spring, said Keitajonjo wetland water system was diverted, resulting in the flooding of the spring.
“They diverted the water system, including rivers, but did nothing to protect the spring from flooding,” he said.
The residents have resorted to collecting money from visitors and tourists to buy murram, which they pack in sacks and put around the hot spring to block water from entering it.
“Dott Services are selling to us the murram, yet they are the ones supposed to protect the spring,” Bishanga said.
However, the Dott Services public relations officer, Emmanuel Nowayesu, said they diverted the river to allow construction of a bridge.
He said the river water was diverted to another channel, but not the hot spring, adding that it is what was indicated in the environmental impact assessment.