AFRICA/SOUTH SUDAN - Mothers and children fleeing in the swamps: intervention of Doctors with Africa CUAMM

Saturday, 23 September 2017


Nyal (Agenzia Fides) - The Bishops of the Country have denounced the situation of extreme tension in a letter in past days (see Fides 19/9/2017). "We have also been witnessing this instability for months", says Dr. Giovanni Dall'Oglio, medical officer, Cuamm, who is responsible for the health care with regards to people fleeing from clashes and hunger in the swamps. When the locals arrive in hospital or have to leave, they are afraid to move in the streets, they are hungry". This is the testimony of the doctor, where an emergency intervention has been initiated to provide health care to people fleeing from clashes and hunger. "To arrive here - he says – one must cross these swamps aboard rudimentary canoes, which at most can carry four people. In some cases it takes two days of navigation. It is the rainy season now, and the water covers most of the territory, here in Nyal people feel safe. The Nile to the east has overflowed and the swamps now extend largely to the west, which borders with Lake State and where the government artillery is stationed. Now no military means venture into these swamps. People here can feel safe even if the rain complicates the transfer of humanitarian means. Fortunately, once airplanes land the essential goods sent by various humanitarian agencies are unloaded: freeze-dried food for the malnourished, medicines, building materials, tents to be given to hundreds of new families coming from the north, seeds and tools for agriculture, and rarely cars. Building materials for the operating room and the four health units are finally arriving. When we went to the people and told them that they would shortly have a health unit, people embraced us and we started singing songs and danced which continued even after our departure". (AP) (Agenzia Fides, 23/9/2017)