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One dead, property Worth millions destroyed in Butaleja floods

Heavy rains have caused catastrophic flooding in Butaleja County in the east of the country. The disaster resulted in the tragic loss of life and the displacement of many families.
Over the past three days, incessant rains have caused extensive damage, including destruction of valuable crops in Himutu, Butaleja, Mazimasa, and Butaleja municipal sub-councils, causing a loss of millions of shillings.
A visit to the affected areas on Wednesday by Daily Monitor, revealed that the Mbale-Butaleja road has been cut off by the flood waters, leaving commuters stranded at Nakwasi and Manafwa bridges.
Raging waters have overwhelmed river banks, flooding nearby towns and displacing hundreds. A local from Bugombe Village in Himutu Sub-County was the victim of the tragic accident. His body was found on Wednesday after he was swept away by the flood waters while trying to cross the Nakwasi Bridge.
The floods have caused extensive damage, with travelers, and students stranded.Local authorities report that many families have been forced from their homes due to rising water levels.
Mr Tom Wandera, environment officer for Butaleja District, confirmed the death toll and announced that temporary shelters had been set up for those affected at Namulo Primary School and Nampologoma shopping centre.
” Floods have ravaged the region, destroying agricultural fields, rice milling equipment, storage facilities, and various other properties. An investigation is underway to determine the extent of the damage. There is an urgent appeal for government assistance,” Mr Wandera said.
The floods have affected educational institutions including Namulo, Bugombe, Leresi, Doho, Kanyenya, and Nakwasi seed secondary schools, necessitating their closure.
Mr Wandera cites inadequate agriculture and environmental degradation as the cause of the flooding in the region. He continues to encourage residents to move to safer areas.
Mr Abdu Shema Swamadu, principal of Doho Primary School, disclosed that the institution was temporarily closed due to the flood. The school building and classrooms are under water, forcing officials to send students home.
The source further revealed that the school gardens have been destroyed, and even the toilets have been damaged by the floods.
Doho Elementary School serves 1,221 students. Mr Ismail Hasahya, a resident of the area, reported that the floods that hit the district around 11pm on Wednesday had left the community in a state of panic. Locals are now diverting via Budaka, Namutumba, and other routes via Tororo to Mbale, which is a long and expensive journey. As a result, fares have gone up.
The floods have cut off the Mbale-Butaleja road, prompting law enforcement to deploy to Nakwasi and Manafwa bridges to control traffic. Mr Michael Higenyi Bory, chairman of Butaleja district, has advised residents and motorists to use the Bunghanji-Budaka, Butaleja-Namutumba, and Butaleja-Tororo roads to reach Mbale town safely.
He blames the disaster on poor agricultural practices, such as complete removal of vegetation cover and encroachment on the banks of the Manafwa River.
Mr Higenyi demands faster construction of reservoirs to reduce the strength of the water.
District officials say flooding from Mt. The main one in Elgon district is devastating as it descends into the low-lying Butaleja District.