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Why the sluggish response by the Wajir County Government to the cholera outbreak in Eldas?

By Abdynassir Hussein:

cholera isolation - nepjournal

A phone call made by the Member of County Assembly, Dela Ward to a local radio station clearly shows the sever jeopardy subjected to victims of the recent cholera outbreak in Eldas and the Wajir County at large.

The cholera bacterium is spread in poor sanitary conditions and the total absence of clean drinking water along with poor medical care. An incidence of cholera is the clearest possible indication of the level of sanitation in a given area. The more drinking water is polluted, human waste not efficiently disposed off and medical services are poor, the greater the risk of an epidemic.

Hon. Abdishakur said “The situation is getting out of hand, there are over 30 in-patients at Eldas hospital which is understaffed and overstretched. We have been going after the county health department and they have been telling us they were coming. They are prevaricating their job. We are startled. We contacted NGOs who are telling us that they can only chip in but the initiative has to be spearheaded by the county health department. They promised to give us jerricans and tents, is this enough? The county government is dragging its feet in its response to the outbreak. As MCAs, we are just law makers. We are just waiting to hear the death of our people. The county government is not concerned at all. We are terrified!’’

Marcel Proust said “people who are not in love fail to understand how an intelligent man can suffer because of a very ordinary woman”. This is like being surprised that anyone should be stricken with cholera because of a creature so insignificant as the common bacillus’’

The prevalent public health challenge is rebuilding health systems. Health is devolved and it should always be the role of the county government to facilitate and take care of the health of each and every citizen. In other words, if you look at this epidemic-cholera, the biggest problem is rejuvenation of the systems.

This clearly demonstrates slackness of the highest array. It’s very unfortunate (shameful) for people to die of cholera in the 21st century. God is with Eldas! May Heaven bless Eldas. May it be a year of fruitfulness, of peace and prosperity; may it be a year of peace and unity for all mankind; may Eldas be freed of cholera. Ultimately, Eldas will be the biggest decision maker in the 2017 elections.

The writer is a web programmer, Chair of the WEEG initiative and Director of Unlad Lipunan Society (One Developmental Society


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