In a devastating incident on the Jinja-Iganga highway, nine lives were tragically lost when a speeding Toyota Hiace taxi collided with a stationary trailer in Musita, Mayuge district.
The taxi, bearing the registration number UBE 939H, was en route from Kampala to Iganga when it collided with a stationary trailer, registered as RAC603Q/ RL1055, also bound for Iganga but incapacitated due to mechanical issues.
The traffic police spokesperson, Michael Kananura, explained, “This trailer had broken down along the highway due to a mechanical fault and had not put any emergency warning signs or reflectors to alert other road users.”
The victims of this harrowing accident include Nangobi Filide, a 35-year-old resident of Kaliro town council, and her two-year-old daughter Brenda Naigembe, Opio Moses, a 37-year-old residing in Kampala with ties to Naluwerere Bugiri district, Mirembe Rachel, aged 35 from Kaliro town council, and Sseruwaji Lukman, a 23-year-old resident of Busei central Iganga but born in Luwewo Bombo Wakamukasa zone.
Additional casualties include Isabirye Peter Oketch, known as Peter Lupiira, the taxi driver from Buwongo in Bugweri district, Alex Wanjala, and Nantale Aisha, aged 27, a resident of Bulanga Nantamu zone in Luuka district.
Nantale Aisha was the wife of local artist Luwangula Sharif, also known as Excel J. The bodies of the deceased have been transported to Iganga General Hospital Mortuary for a postmortem examination.
Six other passengers traveling in the same vehicle sustained severe injuries and are currently receiving treatment at Jinja Regional Referral Hospital.
The police have towed the wreckage to Mayuge central police station’s parking yard, awaiting inspection by experts from the traffic department.
Emmanuel Mukisa, the mayor of Bulanga town council, raised concerns about the dark conditions on the stretch of the highway and the lack of reflectors on the stationary trailer.
He emphasized, “The truck suffered mechanical faults, and the driver abandoned it on the highway without any reflectors.”
This tragic incident has prompted alarm within the community, with many questioning the safety of vehicles lacking proper reflectors. “We heard the Speaker of Parliament, Anita Among, saying that there should be urgency in towing such vehicles along the roads to avoid accidents.
We pray that this directive is implemented,” expressed Buyinza Wilberforce Telime, one of the leaders in Iganga Taxi Park.
Diana Nandawula, the Busoga East Region police spokesperson, also pointed out the role of speeding in the accident and urged all road users to adhere to traffic rules and regulations for their safety and that of others.