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Improve infrastructure to mitigate accidents, Otuoma

Busia Governor Paul Otuoma has urged the Kenya National Highways Authority (KeHNA) to upgrade roads in the county to curb accidents that frequently occur as a result of the dilapidated state of roads that were constructed in the 1970s.

Speaking at Mundika after visiting the Friday accident scene which led to the loss of two lives, Otuoma noted that the structure of the road can no longer accommodate a huge number of trucks that ply the road daily because Busia and Malaba One-Stop-Border-Points are the gateways to East and Central Africa.

“I want to pass my condolences to the families who have lost their loved ones as a result of this fatal accident. I also wish a quick recovery to those hospitalized in various health facilities,” Otuoma noted.

“This should act as a wake-up call to KeNHA to upgrade the state of Busia-Kisumu and Malaba-Eldoret Highways as they bear the burden of heavy trucks transiting goods from Kenya to neighboring countries,” the governor added.

Otouma however noted that as a county they will sensitize residents on road safety measures in case such accidents involve fuel tankers so they don’t move close to the scene but rather give opportunity for specialized groups and police to do their work.

“We must count ourselves lucky as the tanker was not carrying Super Petrol. It would have caused a lot of damage due to ignorance by our people on the safety measures at an accident scene. I advise Busia people not to move closer to such tankers in future,” he added.

The Governor noted that as a county they are racing against time to ensure the trailer park in Busia and Malaba are completed this year to minimize the number of trucks on the road at a given time.

“Sometimes scanners misbehave causing huge traffic snarl-up which is very risky to the residents, that is why as a county we are racing against time to ensure we complete the trailer parks this year,” he noted.

A host of leaders from Busia including CS Ababu Namwamba, PS Susan Mang’eni, Busia Woman Rep Catherine Omanyo and Senator Okiya Omutata also send condolence messages to the affected families as they wished quick recovery to the injured in hospital.

“My heart bleeds for the families of those whose lives have been cut short following a tragic road accident in Mundika area Busia County, involving a passenger Bus (Tahmeed) enroute to Mombasa and a fuel tanker on transit this afternoon. It’s indeed a sad day for the nation and Busia county in particular,” wrote PS Mang’eni on her Facebook account.

Busia Woman Rep Omanyo challenged the government to dual the road from Busia OSBP to Bumala and Malaba to Kanduyi to minimize accidents.

“It’s saddening to see Busia people lose lives due to the bad state of the roads yet Busia as a county generates over 10 billion annually to the government. It’s time for the government to do stock-taking and save lives and the economy,” Omanyo said.

By Absalom Namwalo

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