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Police deploy spies on buses

By Vision Reporter

Added 26th October 2008 03:00 AM

Police spies are to deploy on buses countrywide in a move to check the rising number of deadly road accidents.

Police spies are to deploy on buses countrywide in a move to check the rising number of deadly road accidents.

By Steven Candia and Francis Kagolo

Police spies are to deploy on buses countrywide in a move to check the rising number of deadly road accidents.

“The detectives will be planted on the buses to oversee the manner in which they are driven,” Police spokesperson Judith Nabakooba said yesterday.

Asked who would pay for the Police detectives aboard the buses, Nabakooba remarked: “We are helping them (bus operators) to ensure that the life and property of passengers are protected.”

The new strategy was agreed at a meeting of the Police and bus owners at the Police headquarters on Thursday.

The meeting resolved that Police traffic officers will deploy at parks to ensure that buses are road-worthy and adhere to route charts.

The Police chief, Maj. Gen. Kale Kayihura, is to head a committee to ensure the resolutions are implemented.

Kayihura warned operators that buses which did not meet the minimum safety requirements would be impounded.

“Accidents involving buses have increased because we have been focusing on arresting boda-boda riders,” Kayihura said. “But now bus owners must wake up and make the roads safe.”

The Police recently launched an operation to reign in errant boda-boda riders nationwide but road accidents have persisted.

According to Police records, the death toll from road accidents shot to 2,334 last year, up from 2,171 in 2006. In the last 10 days, 90 people have died and hundreds sustained injuries in bus accidents.

The Police blame reckless driving, speeding, defective vehicles, environmental factors and poor roads. They also yesterday released a list of 84 black (accident-prone) spots countrywide.

In the most recent accident, 30 people perished and over 60 injured when their bus collided with a trailer at Bulyantete on the Kampala - Jinja highway. “It is high time bus owners removed the wrong elements,” Kayihura told the meeting. “If they fail, the Police will invoke the law and impound the buses.”

The meeting also resolved to involve the public who are expected to report speeding drivers and other traffic offenders. The hotlines to call are: 0712767710; 0714667768 and 0712745019.

To ensure that the sentences are deterrent, the traffic offenders, Nabakooba said, could be prosecuted under the Penal Code that imposes more severe sentences than the Traffic Act does.

A Police source said the new measures were necessary after the transport ministry suspended the implementation of speed governors order, which had sought to limit bus speed to 80km per hour. The source said the suspension followed complaints from bus owners about the quality and cost of the speed governors.

Just a day after the Police meeting, another accident killed four people and injured 15 others seriously when a Kampala-bound taxi collided head-on with a Toyota Corona at Namasoga on the Jinja-Iganga highway, 12km from Iganga town, on Saturday morning.

Aboard the taxi that was travelling from Busia to Kampala were 14 passengers, some of them Kenyans and a Somali. The saloon car was travelling from Kiwatule, a Kampala suburb, to Iganga.
(More by Donald Kiirya)

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Dead in Iganga crash
- Betty Nabuzale
- Joseph Odong Oilu
- Unidentified woman
- A Somali from Kenya

Injured
- Peter Bamuleke
- William Bwiire
- Pastor Mark Muhwezi
- Joseph Kariyuki (Kenyan)
- Juliet Kigozi
- Hajoba
- Dinah Kibuga
- Merida Matama
- Shukril (Kenyan)


Bus accidents since 2003
October 2, 2008
Seven people died in bus accident that occurred near the Uganda-Sudan border.

September 1, 2007
Three people died when an omnibus collided with a trailer at Kabalungi near Mbiriizi town

August 9, 2007
Seven people died when a lorry
and a bus collided head-on near Mpigi district headquarters on the Kampala-Masaka highway

Police deploy spies on buses

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