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Residents Irked by Contamination of Water Points by Gulu Abattoir

Lucy Akech, the LC I of Ogony Cell in Kweyo Ward, says that the waste from the abattoir flows straight to Ogony stream where residents fetch water for domestic use since there is no borehole or piped water in the area.
The waste at the abattoir which is contaminating the water points used by the locals -Photo by Jesse Johnson James

Audio 4

Residents of Ogony Cell, Kweyo Ward in Bardege –Layibi Division in Gulu City are protesting the contamination of their water points by the waste from Gulu Main Abattoir.

This follows the overflow of waste like blood and remains of slaughtered animals from the Abattoir found in Wii –Lyibi Cell, Techo Ward, Bardege –Layibi Division via Ogony Community Access Road to Ogony Stream, which is the sole water point for over 1,000 residents of Ogony, Kweyo, and Abwoch Cells.

Lucy Akech, the LC I of Ogony Cell in Kweyo Ward, says that the waste from the abattoir flows straight to Ogony stream where residents fetch water for domestic use since there is no borehole or piped water in the area.     

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According to Akech, they started experiencing contamination in June this year when heavy rain would carry the waste to the water point. He says that to date, none of the Division or City Authorities has intervened, something that has put many at risk of contracting water bond diseases.

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Cue out…kwo pa dano.”//

Brian Openyrwot, the Kweyo Ward councillor who also doubles as the Deputy Speaker for Bardege –Layibi Division revealed that the waste is not only contaminating the water point but also spoiling the road since it leaves it slippery with a foul smell.

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He says that they have established that since the soak pit in the abattoir was built, it has never been drained leading to an overflow of waste. 

Francis Otim, the Kirombe Ward councillor in Bardege –Layibi Division has appealed to the responsible authorities to intervene and correct the problem with immediate effect to save the locals from using contaminated water.

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Cue out …people are suing.”//

On Saturday morning, angry residents of Ogony Cell held a peaceful demonstration at the Abattoir to compel the responsible authorities to act. The area councillors, Brian Openyrwot and Francis Otim, the Councilor for Kirombe Ward led the demonstration.

Michael Lubanga, the Gulu City Health Inspector noted the challenge at the abattoir and soak pit is the work of the tenderer of the abattoir. Lubanga promised to engage the tenderer over the matter.

The temporary abattoir was established in 2018 following the sale of the old abattoir along Sir Samuel Baker Road, the then Layibi Division in Gulu Municipality to an investor. 

In the 2018/ 2019 financial year, Gulu Municipal Council earmarked Shillings 5billion for constructing a modern abattoir at Wii –Layibi Cell under the Uganda Support to Municipal Infrastructure Development –USMID.  However, the project is yet to kick off.