Juba Bridge is ticking bomb

Odongo Odoyo

Topical Commentary

By: Opio Jackson

Risk Management is very important in identifying potential risks in advance so as to take precautionary steps to reduce risk but the usage of one lane of Juba Bridge is not a risk management at all. It is more of sitting on a ticking time bomb.

It has been four months since the government warned heavy truck drivers against using the Juba Bridge. The government said the Bridge is about to collapse but instead of repairing, the government only banned vehicles from using the one lane of Bridge that acted as an entry lane into the city. And since December, 2019 all vehicles have been using one lane of the Bridge for both entry and exit, which is so risky. This will lead to the over use of the one side of the lane that may lead to the total collapse of the Bridge.

As a regular user of the Bridge, I have a concern that if no repair is done very soon, it will cause the nation an undesirable tragedy one day. Despite the fact that we don’t wish for a disaster to happen, it is imperative to take risk management for something we know is likely to happen.  The continuous use of the bridge without any sign of the government repairing it is like sitting on a timing bomb. In fact Juba Bridge is more of a ticking bomb because its strength is fading out each day.   

The Ministry of Road and Bridge needs to act as quick as possible because it is over four months since it reported the poor condition of the Bridge but until now no action has been taken to rebuild damaged parts of the Bridge. In fact some of the rails which the lane sits on are broken and visible to anyone. Therefore, the continuous usage of the Bridge as it is now it is like sitting on ticking bomb that will detonate at any time once it clicks to it limit.

This is the only Bridge across the Nile in the country and main entry point to South Sudan’s Capital city of Juba, which means any unexpected collapse will hit hard the stricken economy that is trying to recover from the devastating war. Juba as the Capital city hosting both Jubek state and the national governments, the government should consider the Juba Bridge as the life-linked to its functioning because any collapse of the bridge will be disconnected from the citizens across the Bridge.  Juba Bridge is a ticking bomb.

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