PWDs narrate nerve wrecking ordeals in IDP camps


A section of people who are living with disabilities in Kasese district are decrying the high rate of discrimination and lack of access to basic necessities in the various Internally Displaced Persons camps.

More than 5000 people, some of them Persons with Disabilities, are encamped in 18 camps scattered across the district including Nyambuku SDA primary school, Kihungamiyagha Primary School, and Mapatha trading centre following heavy down pours that not only caused landslides but also claimed lives before displacing several others.

Whereas the 5,389 internally displaced persons are living in a deplorable state, the situation is worse for people living with disabilities.

According to Njerinah Ithungu, 41, who has sight impairment but currently stays at Nyambuku Primary School IDP camp, the challenges PWDs face during disasters are immense.

Ithungu cites the lack of access to information and the lack of a guide to support the blind to run away from the disaster.

 A 90 year old blind woman, Elinora Kabugho and mother of 07 told Messiah Radio that guides also tend to run for their safety and abandon the PWDs whenever disasters strike.

Mr. Bernard Baluku, 33 years who has a disability in his movement says even meeting some of the basic needs becomes difficult for him because he is not in position to move with ease from one place to another even when he is in the same camp before explaining that the terrain of the district also complicates matters further.

Sylvia Muhindo, a councilor representing the people living with disabilities in Ibanda –Kyanya Town Council, highlights that they too find it hard to access meals on time because their guides leave then in the camps in the quest for food from their crop gardens that they left after disasters.

Mr. Martin Ssenoga, the Programs Manager at the National Union of Disabled Persons of Uganda –NUDIPU says PWDs face untold suffering in times of disaster and thus there is need to always pay special attention to them.

He quickly encouraged the District Disaster Management Committee, to always be mindful of persons with disabilities whenever responding to emergencies.


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