Saturday, 06 March, 2021

Uganda: Pay for Loss of Lives, Museveni Tells Owner of Ill-Fated Fuel Tanker

President Museveni has tasked police to look for the owner of the fuel tanker which crashed and burnt people and property in Rubirizi District for possible compensation of lives and property.

The fuel tanker from Eldoret, Kenya, was heading to Butembo in Democratic Republic of Congo but lost control and crashed.

At least 23 people were burnt to death and 15 were injured.

Condoling with residents at Kyambura Trading Centre on Sunday, Mr Museveni said: “Compensation for loss of lives and property is supposed to be made by the owner of the company (of the tanker). You (leaders) are speaking as if the matter ends there, it is not like that. If a vehicle kills people and destroys property out of negligence, you (owner) must compensate.”

He added that government will give each family that lost a person (or persons) Shs5 million, Shs1 million to each of those who were injured, and replace the property that was lost.

The driver of the fuel tanker was burnt to death while the turn man, Abdullah Aziz Hassan Gulamu, is still nursing severe burns at Kampala International University Teaching Hospital in Bushenyi District.

Narrating the crash

Mr Gulamu last week said the brakes of the vehicle failed and it rammed into stationary vehicles.

“We were carrying diesel to Butembo (North Kivu) in DR Congo. The driver failed to brake. He stepped on the brake again and the warming alarm went off. The driver tried to do his best in vain because it was at a corner and the road was narrow. The tank got disconnected from the cabin [the part that shelters the driver and turn boy] and fell. It hit taxis and motorcycles, and one compartment caught fire,” he said.

The Resident District Commissioner, Ms Harriet Nakamya, said six bodies were identified and buried by relatives, 16 were taken to the city mortuary, and eight people have turned up for DNA testing so that they can identify their deceased relatives.

Imam of Kyambura Mosque Swabul Nkonge said the mosque leadership has offered land to bury bodies that will be unclaimed.

President Museveni also cautioned drivers to be carefully on the road.

“Those who have vehicles should ensure that the driver is well trained and it must be in good condition, don’t just buy and drive,” Mr Museveni said.

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