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PWDs in Kitgum Fault Gov't for Slow Relief Food Distribution

Sylvia Layet 58, one of the disable person’s in Lemu East Cell in Pager Division says she has been struggling to put food on the table for her five grandchildren staying with her for the past weeks.
Some of the PWDs who turned up to collect food distributed at Kitgum Resident District Commissioners Office on Friday. Photo By Julius Ocungi

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People with disabilities-PWDs in Kitgum district have decried the government’s slow response to their plight during the COVID-19 lockdown.

Thousands of disabled persons within the urban and rural centres in the district are struggling to cope up with the COVID-19 lockdown measures that the government issued in March.  

Sylvia Layet 58, a resident of Lemu East Cell in Pager Division says she has been struggling to put food on the table for her five grandchildren for the past weeks.

Layet says she used to earn money by begging from well-wishers and businessmen but notes that ever since the COVID-19 pandemic, several businesses were shut down leaving her vulnerable.

  Luo

  //cue in: “Naka abino ayenyo…

“Cue out:…lutino obut kec.”//

Geoffrey Okwera, another PWD and resident of Pager says although COVID-19 pandemic has affected everyone, disabled persons have been worst hit and require urgent government attention.

He notes that ever since the lockdown, food relief distribution has not reached PWDs in Kitgum district yet many are starving and unable to farm.  

Luo  

//cue in: “Pol dano ni…

Cue out:…cito mere kede.”//

Mary Josephine Aciro who used to vend charcoal, on the other hand, says she has now resorted to eating food or porridge only once a day with her seven children to save the little food she has.

She says unlike vulnerable people who were supported with food relief in Kampala and Wakiso district, the situation is different in Kitgum.   

  //cue in: “kwon na pira…

Cue out:…di ot oko.”//

 Mathew Omoya, the Kitgum District Council Chairperson for PWDs, however, says the food aid is not timely considering that almost two months have gone by without anyone helping their members.  

  // Cue in: “Omito awac ni…

Cue out:..ma oromo lungolo.”//

Omoya appealed to government to consider helping PWDs in northern Uganda because it is a double tragedy for them since they are still recovering from the brunt of the two decades Lord’s Resistance Army Insurgency [LRA].    

//cue in: “Amito cwalo loka…

Cue out:… lungolo I district.”//

The State Minister for Foreign Affairs also the Chua East Legislator Henry Okello Oryem recently said that government had been informed and were making all possible arrangements to ensure relief food is distributed to the vulnerable.

Kitgum District has a total of 16,000 PWDs and about 200 live in the Municipality.

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