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Fort Portal city authorities raise concern over vandalism of street lights

Newly installed automatic solar street lights

Fort Portal, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Fort Portal city authorities are concerned over the vandalism of solar street lights. The most affected solar lights are found in Nyabukara ward, Lugard road, Kyebambe road and Fort-Portal-Kamwenge roads.

Joseph Rujuma, the Bazaar ward councillor to Central Division, says that a number of solar street lights installed along Fort Portal-Kamwenge road have been vandalized yet the space is a black spot where criminals hide to attack people visiting Fort Portal Regional Referral hospital especially patient attendants and medical staff at night.

Rujuma says that he has since reported the matter to the central division council seeking alternative measures to safeguard the population from criminals who waylay their victims to no avail. Joseph Musiirikale, the Nyabukara ward male council says in his area, 3 street lights were vandalized. He however says that security managed to apprehend the suspects who have since been tried.

Albert Ahewa, the Speaker of the Fort Portal Tourism city council says that the council had tasked a committee to find out the cause of the problem and inform the council, which shall thereafter resolve a solution to safeguard the public assets in the city. Richard Muhumuza, the Fort Portal City central division Mayor told URN that he had dispatched a team to hunt for the vandals.

He says that a number of them were arrested and subsequently tried in court whereas others are still at large. Muhumuza says that 13 street lights have been vandalized. The most affected area is Bazaar ward where 4 street lights have been vandalized along with the Fort portal Kamwenge road, 2 on Kyebambe road, 3 in Nyabukara ward, Kacwamba cell 1, all located in the central division Fort Portal.

The mayor says police also recovered a number of solar lights, which are currently at the city council yard pending re-installation.

David Musingizi, an activist in Fort Portal city says that police laxity in conducting operations to nab criminals is the leading cause of the increasing cases of crime, which include vandalism.

Eunice Kajobe, the town clerk of Fort Portal city central division says that the division is planning to modify the street lights with a provision of spikes to deter criminals from removing batteries and panels as they plan to reinstall the lights in the affected divisions.

He however says that the street lights along Fort Portal Hima road were not vandalized as claimed but they were removed for the adjustment of the road during construction.

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