Rains have washed away a drainage channel at Masindi central market in Masindi town just hours after it was commissioned.
The channel that is supposed to drain runoff from the market was commissioned by Masindi Municipal and Central division officials including Mayor Joab Businge, last evening.
However, following a heavy downpour a few hours later, a part of the drainage system was washed away and part of it collapsed.
Vendors at the market blamed the incident on shoddy construction due to failure by the municipal authorities to supervise the project.
“The work they did was shoddy since the mixture of the materials used wasn’t to the required standard,” the vendors lamented, while others blamed what they termed “shoddy work” on corruption.
”Substandard materials were used because the engineers wanted minimise costs so that they could also ‘eat’ [colloq. for embezzlement],” one vendor said on condition of anonymity.
The construction of Masindi central market’s drainage system cost Masindi municipality Shs 22m to complete.
However, the Chairperson Masindi central division, Fredrick Bagonza Mandela, dismissed the vendors’ corruption claims, saying the system was constructed in a busy place, with the result that some people stepped on it and destroyed it before completion.
He, however, revealed that some defects had been detected during the commissioning, and the Municipal Engineer and instructed the contractor to rectify them.
When our reporter visited the site, repairs on the damaged drain had commenced.