Floods Continue to Pound Kasese, Bundibugyo

A second wave of floods has washed away a huge part of Kilembe Mines Hospital and severely destroyed two villages in Kasese district as River Nyamwamba and several other rivers burst their banks on Sunday.

The two villages of Kanyaruboga and Bulembia in Kilembe are in ruins with buildings carried away by floods. The land is now filled with heavy boulders.

The incident comes just three days after heavy floods from River Nyamwamba left hundreds of residents homeless and destroyed properties and facilities including Kilembe Mines Hospital.

Om May 7, the state Minister for Disaster Preparedness and Management in the Office of the Prime Minister, Musa Ecweru flew to Kasese to assess the extent of destruction caused by the heavy rains and floods that are ravaging the districts of Kasese and Bundibugyo in Western Uganda.

Ecweru visited various spots where the banks of River Nyamwamba burst destroying property worth millions of shillings including houses, crops and community facilities like schools and health centers.

Notable among badly devastated facilities is the Kilembe Mines Hospital where some wards were completely swept away by the floods.

Kilembe Mines Hospital administrator Onesmus Kibaya says that a number of structures that had been spared by the Thursday, May 7, 2020 floods have been brought down.

To Kibaya, the hospital is ideally no more since most of the facilities including a patients’ shelter, kitchen, two incinerators, six rooms of the female and general wards plus a generator that has been running an international accredited laboratory were washed away by the floodwaters.

Brigadier Stephen Oluka, who is leading the National Emergency Coordination department in the Office of the Prime Minister, described the situation as “devastating.”

Brig. Oluka says they are finding challenges in resettling those who are still trapped in the mountains and accessing health services.

Oluka adds that they will survey the areas to establish persons who are still leaving in flood-prone areas for resettlement.

Kasese Municipality Mayor Geoffrey Kabyanga Baluku says there is nothing to rehabilitate in the two villages that have been damaged.
The authorities have resolved to force all persons in the flood-prone areas to vacate as more rains are expected.

Over 120,000 people are displaced and have sought shelter in churches, sub-county headquarters and others are hosted by relatives and friends.

The Rwenzori mountain areas, which are the catchment for rivers including Nyamwamba, experience heavy rains in the months of April, May, September and October. During this period large volumes of water sweep through the low lying areas leaving a trail of destruction. The area experienced similar floods in 2018, 2013, 1980 and 1966.


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