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Karamoja Residents Share Water with Animals

At Lokisile village in Rupa Sub County, Moroto district, both herdsmen from the area and Turkana pastoralists share water with animals at the dam, which is the only water source. The residents use the contaminated water for drinking, bathing and other domestic needs.
Young herdsman bathes while the other collects the same water for drinking at Lokisile water dam.

Audio 3

Communities neighbouring valley dams in the Karamoja sub-region are sharing water sources with livestock following the shortage of clean water sources.  The valley dams were built for watering livestock.

At Lokisile village in Rupa Sub County, Moroto district, both herdsmen from the area and Turkana pastoralists share water with animals at the dam, which is the only water source.

The residents use the contaminated water for drinking, bathing and other domestic needs.

Maria Nakiru, one of the residents, says she has no option but draw water from the valley dam.

“There are about five villages around this place. All of us here depend on this dam. We are happy that it still has some water to cater for us. When it dries, we are forced to walk for five kilometres to fetch water for household use”, Nakiru said.

Theresa Apio, an artisan miner and resident in Rupa trading centre says most people trek long distances to access water from the dam. She explains that a few of the residents especially at the mining sites pay up to 2,000 shillings to fetch jerry can water from boreholes.

// Cue in “eyakas kwana…

Cue out…akipi angun”//

A survey from Twaweza entitled Sauti za Wananchi indicates that more citizens say their access to water is getting worse than better. The survey notes that besides walking distances to access clean water, which takes some people more than one hour, four out of ten citizens (40%) say their access to clean and safe water has gotten worse over the past 12 months, compared to three out of ten (30%) who say it has improved, according to Twaweza findings.

Charles Onyang, the District Health Educator, Moroto says the water issues have a serious bearing on hygiene and sanitation. He notes that the district is grappling with waterborne related diseases due to low access to clean water.

// Cue in “sanitation and hygiene…

Cue out…and storage”//

Clementina Lochoro, the district woman councillor for Rupa Sub County acknowledges the problem but notes that many attempts to drill boreholes in the area have been frustrated by the low water table.

// Cue in “that side…

Cue out…a lot of water”//

According to Moroto district health report, 75 percent of people in the district have access to water.