Mbale municipality has embarked on major road rehabilitation works worth 12 billion shillings under the Uganda Support to Municipality Infrastructural Development –USMID, which is funded by World Bank.
James Kutosi, the Public Relations officer Mbale Municipal Council says Plinth Technical Services; a Zambian construction firm has been contracted to undertake the rehabilitation works.
He says the rehabilitation works will cover four major roads including Republic Street, Pallisa road, Nabuyonga Rise and Bugisu hill roads.
Kutosi said the roads would be redesigned and improved to Grade A. He says the work would include expansion of the road and installation of traffic lights. He explained that the major round about on Pallisa road would be removed and the road left as a straight stretch.
Kutosi says traffic lights would be installed at the former roundabout to control the traffic flow. He said the entire work is expected to be completed in 12 months.
The contractor has started pegging the roads. The road works have been greeted by mixed feelings with some residents saying it would be a great relief while others mostly businessmen are worried that it will affect their business.
Hussein Zubair, who owns a boutique along Republic Street fears that the road works might affect his business because of the heavy machinery that would be used and dust. However, Kutosi appeals to those who would be affected to sacrifice their business in the short run for a major benefit.
The state of roads in Mbale Municipality is appalling. Most of the roads are filled with potholes, despite the fact that Mbale municipality is fighting for a city status. Residents have on several occasions closed some of the roads and planted bananas suckers and yams to express their disappointment.