Road Sign Vandalism sees Change in Tactics.

Vandals have devised new tactics to steal signposts along the Kabale-Kisoro road. The vandals allegedly disguise themselves as road workers to steal road signs. The vandals target reflectors, signposts and road guards that they sell to scrap dealers. In December 2012, Police deployed along the road to stop the vice following a directive from President Yoweri Museveni. Police also conducted an operation in which 13 people were arrested for alleged theft of the road sign posts.

The works minister also ordered police to shoot on site whoever is found vandalizing road signs. The vandals varnished but have since resumed their work. James Mutabazi, a taxi driver along the Kabale–Kisoro road says that some of the signs which were replaced in early January have again been stolen by the vandals.

He cites the theft of signposts in Ikumba and Muko sub counties saying it makes driving on that part of the road risky for motorists because it has sharp corners. Pastori Twinomuhangi, a resident of Muko sub County who also doubles as the Kabale District Speaker says the vandals have devised new tricks.

He says the vandals pretend to be fixing some defects on the road during the day to steal road signs. Twinomuhangi attributes the vice to the ready market for scrap provided by metal fabricators and dealers. He also says residents have shied away from confronting the vandals for fear of their lives because of lack of security. Twinomuhangi says the cops who were deployed along the road to stem out the theft have since been withdrawn.

Mathew Moses Elayo, the Kabale RDC says the district security committee has started investigating the theft of the signposts and apprehend the suspects. He calls on all residents to protect the road signposts jealously saying vandalism doesn’t only cost government huge sums of money but leads to loss of lives.

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