By Walukhu Peter and Ronald Weswa, NECJOGHA CORRESPONDENT, MBALE
Five people have been confirmed dead and over 100 houses destroyed following landslides that hit Bududa on Tuesday after a heavy downpour.
According to Uganda Red Cross Society, over 150 houses were destroyed, five people killed and over 50 are still missing.
The landslides occurred at about 11:30 pm on Tuesday after four hours of rain that started pounding the area at about 7 pm.
The most affected villages are Shisakali parish in Buwali Sub-county, where an 8-year-old girl was buried by mud. She was a pupil of Bundesi Primary School.
According to the deputy Chief Administrative Officer of Bududa District, Samson Natsami, four of the dead were from Bunambwa parish and one from Bukobero parish.
“Apart from the houses which were destroyed many domestic animals like cows, goats and pigs as well as crop like bananas, coffee and maize were buried in the mud,” Natsami said. The LC3 chairperson of Buwalasi, Stephen Manya however said many houses which were carried away in the landslides were deserted after their owners left when the developed cracks.
Last month, the government under the Office of the Prime Minister started the first phase of the relocation of people facing danger of being affected by the Bududa mudslides.
Government allocated 8 billion shillings to buy over 2000 acres of land at Bunambutye Sub County in Bulambuli district to resettle 720 people living in mudslide risk areas from five districts like Bududa, Bulambuli, Manafwa, Namisndwa and Sironko in Bugisu sub region.
According to the Head of Communications at OPM, Mr. Julius Mucunguzi, in this first phase they relocated 98 homes from Bududa, Manafwa, Bulambuli, Namisindwa and Sironko.
RECENT LANDSLIDES DEATHS IN BUDUDA
March 2010: Landslides killed about 150 people and displaced over 10,000, in Nametsi sub-county, Bududa district.
March 2011: A landslide swept the slopes of Mt. Elgon, razing three villages in Bududa district (Kubehwo, Namangasa and Nametsi) located in Bukalasi sub-county. Ninety-two bodies out of the 365 people were recovered and only 31 survivors were rescued from the three affected villages.
June 2012: Landslides occurred at Bunakasala parish, Bududa district, sweeping through four villages after a heavy downpour in the area for two days. At least nine were injured and 15 houses were buried.
August 2013: A four-year-old child, John Mangoye, the son of Stephen Waninga, a resident of Matuwa parish, was killed after a hailstorm ravaged several villages causing multiple mudslides and floods in Bushiyi sub-county in Bududa district. At least 17 other injured persons were admitted to Bududa Hospital, while an unspecified number mostly children, the elderly and disabled were unaccounted for and feared dead.(Peter Walukhu works with Step FM and Ronald Weswa with Elgon FM both in Mbale)