Ferdinand Ojera Severio, the General Secretary Apaa Township says that at least ten lives of children and pregnant mothers in the area were lost in the area since last year due to the lack of better health services.
Hundreds of drugs are rotting in Apaa Health Centre II in Adjumani
district that was closed three years ago.
The health facility that was serving a population of over 26,000 from Gaji,
Acholi Ber, Coro, Luru, Punu Dyang, Juka, Alony, Kal Acut, Aker and Oyanga
villages among others was closed by the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) in 2018
on claims that it is located in the East Madi Wildlife Reserve.
The Health Centre had received an assortment of drugs by the time of its closure.
The closure of the facility has forced residents to trek more than 20 or
boarding over 100 kilometres to access health services at Lacor Health Centre
III in Pabbo Town Council, Mungula Health Centre in Adjumani district, Gulu
Main Hospital and St Mary`s Hospital Lacor in Gulu City.
Susan Anena, a resident and mother of four in the area says that it is
unfortunate that drugs are rotting at the closed Health Centre while the residents
are struggling to access better health services from distant places
Anena explained that women and children are the most hit by the
closure, noting that many pregnant mothers are skipping Antenatal Care (ANC)
and resorting to Traditional Birth Attendants (TBAs).
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Judith Aryemo, another resident says that she has resorted to buying drugs from
a local drug shop in the area since she can’t afford fifty thousand shillings to
travel to Lacor Health Centre III in Pabbo Town Council.
Aryemo added that the situation has worsened due to the ban on public transport.
Ferdinand Ojera Severio, the General Secretary Apaa Township says that
at least ten lives of children and pregnant mothers in the area were lost in
the area since last year due to the lack of better health services.
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The latest victim was Paska Agunya who died with her unborn baby
last week while giving birth from home.
According to Ojera, the deaths stemmed from self-medication, birth
complications in the hands of Traditional Birth Attendants (TBAs) and other
ailments including diarrhoea, malaria, dysentery and pneumonia among others.
Ojera who visited Apaa Health Centre II last week said that he was shocked to
find several boxes of malarial drugs, family planning pills, Panadols, Flagyl,
amoxicillin, syringes among others rotting while others have been covered by
He appealed to the government to reopen the health centre much as the question
of land ownership is still unfinished.
Last year Amuru district started a process of relocating the health centre to
Wii Owaa Junction in Pabbo Sub County and even a three acres’ piece of land had
been offered by one Patrick Ocaya Okori but the relocation stalled.
Currently, Apaa Health centre II is located on a three acres plot of land in
Apaa Township which is claimed to be owned by one Lamee Atube, a resident who
claims ancestral ownership of the area.
Dr Patrick Odong Olwedo the Amuru District Health Officer says that that the
relocation of the health centre has been indefinitely suspended noting that the
district is currently offering health services through outreaches.
Emmy Daniel Ojara is a young journalist and has been practicing since 2013, during which he covered land rights violation in the contested Apaa and Lakang in Amuru as his first take ups while at Gulu Fm, Favor Fm and later Paidha Fm and Speak Fm where he is still attached.
Human rights abuses and denied access to land by security and government agencies has been the major aftermath of the contest over the lands. The underprivileged such as women, children and the elderly faced challenges in accessing soc