The families of three people knocked by the lead vehicle of the speaker Rebecca Kadaga's convoy in Fort Portal Tourism city are demanding compensation of Shs 400 million.
The accident occurred on August 3, 2020, at Boma as Kadaga headed out Fort Portal, where she had gone to campaign on the radio for her re-election back on the ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM) party central executive committee.
The three accident victims were riding on a boda boda on their way to Fort Portal city centre. They were knocked by Kadaga's convoy lead vehicle Reg. No. UP 4842. According to eyewitnesses, the speaker’s convoy was driving on the wrong side of a one-way road.
Two of the victims were sisters - Shamilah Mbabazi and Aminah Kakwezi, both residents of Kiteere in Central Division, Fort Portal while Karim Mitala, the third victim, the one who was riding the boda boda at the time of the accident, died about two weeks ago.
Even though the postmortem report is not yet out, his father, Abdul Mitala says his son died due to lack of proper treatment for the severe injuries he sustained. Mitala sustained injuries on the head and his right thigh. He was operated two days after the accident, but pus started oozing from the stitched incisions that had degenerated into septic wounds.
After the accident, the three were rushed to Fort Portal Regional Referral hospital for medical attention. The speaker allegedly gave the three victims Shs 1 million to cater for their treatment and other needs.
Mitala got Shs 400,000 while the siblings shared Shs 600,000. Prior to Mitala’s death, his father told our reporter that he had run out of money to cater for his treatment, and was waiting for him to breathe his last at their home in Nyabuzosi cell, Central Division, Fort Portal.
Meanwhile, an x-ray had shown that Kakwezi’s left hip got dislocated and her thighbone had cracked. Another x-ray indicated that her left hand was also dislocated from the shoulders. After the operation, a catheter was inserted in her body to help her pass out urine but she has since remained bedridden due to severe pain.
For Mbabazi, a sharp object tore apart the flesh on her right thigh and the stitched wounds have since been draining. The sisters have since stopped working and are at home and can’t afford proper medical care. Now, URN has learnt that after Mitala’s death, Dorothy Kaliba, the former deputy mayor Fort Portal Municipality and her husband Steven Kaliba, the former MP for the same area, decided to join the family and chase for compensation.
Kaliba, who is also the former Tooro kingdom prime minister, says Kadaga sent Shs 1 million and a condolence message through him to Mitala’s father. In addition, the speaker sent two parliamentary staff, Moses Akena from the legal department and Miniru Watuwa from the administration on Wednesday to the duo’s family.
According to Hamada Mayanja, the father to Kakwezi and Mbabazi, the Kaliba family, Mitala’s father and the two parliamentary staff met in a closed-door meeting at Mountains of the Moon hotel in Fort Portal to discuss an out-of-court settlement since the families of the victims were already pursuing the case.
Mayanja says that he demanded Shs 200 million for her two daughters as compensation because they were made to buy everything including the drugs that they received while still at the hospital. He also said Kakwezi is still too sick and requires specialised medical attention in Kampala.
On his part, Mitala says that since his son was the breadwinner on the family, he asked for Shs 200 million as compensation. He says the other reason why he asked for this amount is because he didn’t get any other help from the speaker’s office other than the endless promises of financial assistance.
The two parents say that the parliamentary staff asked for documents that can support their claims and will soon meet in another meeting. They, however, warned that they would proceed to court should the negotiations fail to yield results. Our reporter was unable to get a comment from the speaker’s office by the time of filing this story.