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Pozzolana Mining Destroys Kabarole Roads

Residents in the areas of Kichwamba and Harugongo, where substantial deposits of the siliceous material are found, are complaining that the roads in the area have been damaged by the heavy trucks which collect the mineral from the mines.

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Residents and leaders in Kabarole district are concerned over the poor state of the roads resulting from Pozzolana mining and related activities.

The fine variety of volcanic tuff or ash used in making hydraulic is found in the west, east and south western parts of Uganda. It can be used for making concrete structures or combined with other elements to fortify cement.

However, residents in the areas of Kichwamba and Harugongo, where substantial deposits of the siliceous material are found, are complaining that the roads in the area have been damaged by the heavy trucks which collect the mineral from the mines.

Charles Businge, the LCIII chairperson of Kichwamba Sub County says that for more than five years, truck drivers have failed to remit money to the Sub County. Businge says that it was agreed that the truck drivers pay money to the Sub County depending on the tonnage of Pozzolana carried by the truck.

According to the Mining Act, royalties shall be shared by Government, Local Governments and lawful occupiers of the land on which the mining is taking place. The act states that government is entitled to 80 percent of the royalties, the Local Government is entitled to 17 percent and the owner of the land gets three percent of the royalties.

Businge says that the royalties would go a long way in maintaining the roads in the sub county. 

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David Isagara, a resident of Bwanika parish, Harugongo Sub County says that when it rains heavy trucks still use the roads and cut off the Sub County from other parts of the district. He cites the Bwanika- Harugongo road which was cut off making it difficult for residents to access the health centre.

Kabarole District Vice Chairperson and secretary for works Moses Ikagobya says government has been promising to remit the royalties to the district, in vain.

Ikagobya explains that the government last remitted seven million Shillings to the district three years ago yet around the same time, President Museveni, ordered the district to stop levying fees from the truck drivers.

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