Madrid. About 900 people have died since February in Uganda’s northeastern Karamoja district due to famine-related diseases caused by crop failure and drought, local leaders were quoted by the daily as saying. Daily Monitor.
The sources pointed out that the figures collected by the local authorities and intelligence services indicate that more than 900 people, mostly children and the elderly, were killed, amid the slow response to deal with the crisis.
The situation has generated a new factor of instability, such as increased clashes between local communities over attempts to steal cattle, prompting the army to arrest more than 400 people since mid-May.
“It is difficult to explain our situation to foreigners until they visit our settlements,” Lutesan sub-county chief John Robert Aduba said, adding that 22 people have died in the area from famine-related diseases.
Boil the skin of goats and cows to eat
He stressed that “there is almost nothing that can be harvested”, as the crops have practically disappeared, and “people need food, and some have resorted to boiling goat and cow hides to eat.”
Kotido district chief Lot Paul Koder said 626 people, mostly elderly people and children aged three to six, had died in the past five months.
Robert Kennedy Okuda, Kotido’s production officer, said half of the district’s roughly 165,000 residents do not have enough to eat.
Added to these numbers are the deaths of about 260 people in Kabung district between January and July. “The situation is bad,” said local leader Gino Meri, who compared the situation to the famine that ravaged the area between 1979 and 1980.
Paulo Coder, the president of Napal, confirmed 49 deaths in his district.
The heat wave rocking the region has dried up the torrents of water that drained from Mount Moroto, allowing agricultural activities in the region, where about eight out of ten families are food insecure, according to official statistics.
The Karamoja region is one of the poorest regions in the country, with a notable rural population.
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