By Peter Abanabasazi
Police in Kikuube has arrested a 40-year-old man on allegations of stealing fuel from trucks belonging to China Railway Seventh Group Company Limited. The firm is undertaking major construction works on critical roads in the Albertine Graben.
The suspect has been identified as Ronald Amanya, a resident of Hoima City. Julius Hakiza, the Albertine region police spokesperson says that the suspect was arrested on Saturday while driving a vehicle registration number UBG 230N.
He says police acted on a tip-off and started trailing the suspect from Kizirafumbi trading centre up to Buhimba town Council where he was arrested.
After realizing that he was being pursued by police, he abandoned his vehicle by the roadside and fled.
Police chased him until he was arrested and whisked to Kikuube Central Police station where he is currently being detained. Upon his arrest police recovered 40 jerrycans of siphoned fuel from his vehicle.
Last month, China Railway Seventh Group Company limited said it was losing 162 Million Shillings per month due to fuel theft.
The firm was contracted by the government to construct the Masindi-Biiso 54km, Hohwa-Nyairongo-Kyarushesha-Butole 25km and Kabaale-Kiziranfumbi 25.7km in Hoima, Buliisa Masindi and Kikuube districts. The roads measure 97km.
Theft of fuel on major road construction projects and other critical projects in the Albertine Graben is rampant.
On April 13, 2021, police in Buliisa arrested three people for allegedly stealing fuel from trucks belonging to China Chongqing International Construction Company Limited- CICO. The company was contracted to work on the Hoima –Butiaba- Wanseko road.
The suspects identified as Charles Katwkwa 35, Jesero Wandera 36 and Abdallah Kusiima 19 were arrested in Buliisa town Council after they connived with CICO truck drivers and siphoned fuel from the trucks.
In April 2018, detectives recovered 2,000 litres of diesel that had been stolen from the Hoima International Airport construction site in Kabaale village, Kabaale Parish, Kabaale Sub County in Hoima district and arrested nine people for allegedly siphoning fuel from company vehicles.
The suspects were using a pick-up truck to transport the siphoned fuel to Kampala.