Kenya Power urged to remove electricity poles on road reserve Butula
Written by Frankline Bwire and Carren Papai
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Site agent Bumala-Ejinja road. He says the electricity poles have affected the construction exercise of the road. [Photo | Frankline Bwire ]
The tarmacking exercise of the 37 km Bumala-Ejinja road in Butula district is likely to be delayed if the Kenya Power Company does not remove the electricity poles erected on the road reserve.
According to Engineer Jonathan Karunja, the site agent of the road under the construction company that won the tender (Hayer Bishan), the three year project could be affected if the relevant company does not move the poles from the road for work to continue.
Speaking in Butula district, Karunja said the power lines were a serious threat to the lives of workers and the local residents living in the area especially those using the power to operate machines.
“The width of the original road was four metres compared to the new one which has a width of nine and half metres. The Power Company should intervene in a matter of urgency and ensure the power poles are removed to avoid any death caused by the power lines,” he said, adding that they have left most workers in fear.
“Despite having tarmacked a maximum of five kilometres from Muruka area towards Tingolo market, we have been forced to make diversions that are quite dangerous,” he said, adding that it has also made the construction exercise quite slow a move that might affect the construction calendar.
The area legislator Alfred Odhiambo expressed confidence that the Sh 1.7 billion road was a big development project for the area and will help improve the economy by attracting various investors once it is complete.
He warned leaders in the area against politicizing development issues meant to benefit the area residents but instead embrace a close working relationship to help improve the area.
“Let us work together as a community and provide the necessary help required by the road construction workers for them to complete their work in line with the time set for them,” said Odhiambo, urging the Kenya Power officers to address the issue.
Malaba residents cry foul over frequent power surge
Elsewhere, residents in Malaba have cried foul over persistent power failure in the area and appealed for an urgent solution.
Speaking to West FM, they said the frequency of power outages in the area is unaccountable with no outstanding bills to warrant the torture.
Hotel owners and business persons revealed having gone without power since Monday with futile efforts to have Kenya Power and Lightning Company officers restore the supply.
They further claimed that since January power supply has been on and off with daily operations at the border coming to standstill.
“Our cherished customers have now opted for better services across the border in Uganda where there is electricity,” said Ann Amoit a business lady.
Father Dome of Kocholya Parish also echoed the sentiments saying that the parish is forced to conduct 6am daily masses in darkness and failing to enjoy benefits associated with availability of electricity.
He said whenever the officers from KPLC come they rectify the problem from the transformer they do it well, but power resumes and vanishes shortly afterwards.
“We are left to wonder whether officers sent are genuine KPL staffers. If they are then they are not doing their work,” Dome said.
The outcry comes barely two weeks after six families in Adungosi village, Teso South district lost property worth millions of shillings in power surge drama.