Greetings from Abba Father’s House. As the Covid-19 virus rampages in the world, here are some of its effects to the local people of Uganda.
Apart from China, all countries around the globe contracted the virus through travellers. In Uganda, the virus was first reported in March from travellers through Entebbe airport. Eye witnesses state that first case was that of 20 Chinese who were driven from the airport to a location where the locals saw them, got concerned and sounded an alarm to the Government to stop the Chinese from lodging at one of the Hotel in Kampala city where they had been booked. In response the Government was compelled carry out tests which revealed that six of them tested positive to Covid-19. Since then, the Uganda Government ensures that whoever tests positive is kept in quarantine of 2 weeks or more.
On a positive note so far, no death from Covid-19 has been reported in Uganda which makes one wonder whether or not those people actually tested positive to Covid-19. As of April, the Government reported 79 people who have tested positive. Out of the 79, 2 are Ugandans, 52 are reported to have recovered, 17 are still active and 10 repatriated. The 17 active include heavy-duty Lorry Drivers from neighbouring countries which are supplying goods as Uganda closed boarders to outsiders.
The Effect of Covid-19
Despite there being no death in Uganda so far, the lockdown due to Covid-19 has brought so much suffering and chaos, even death due to there being no food and basic necessities as the Government is not providing food or money to the local people who mainly depend on daily earned income. Increased family disputes and some men have abandoned their families yet men are usually the bread earners in most families. People are dying of hanger and some committing suicide.
Some women have started striking naked demanding for food from the Government whilst other women are crying on streets and begging the Government lift the lock down so that people can go to work and be able to feed their children. Families have sold their belongings cheaply to be able to buy food. Instead, the Government has given large sums of money to Government Ministers to sustain them in the crisis and the poor people have been left without help. It is rumoured that a few people in Kampala City Suburbs received some food handouts from the Government but Jinja where Abba Father’s House is located and indeed many areas around the country have not received help from the Government yet.
During the lock down, only Markets and food shops are allowed to open, and no one is allowed to leave their home from 7pm. Transport has been suspended and only food trucks are allowed on roads. Anyone who needs to be taken to Hospital must get permission from the Local Authority to take the sick to the hospitals. Anyone found breaking the rules is severely beaten and rumour has it that some people have even been shot at.
The Government has instructed Market traders to stay in the markets just in case they may spread the virus to their families which is very hard for traders. At night, only the Security and Police are allowed to patrol however, it’s been said that the market trader’s houses are broken into at night whilst they are away which is very distressing and it’s believed that those supposed to guard are breaking into people’s homes and stealing their belongings.
The Biggest Need
At the moment, COVID 19 is not biggest challenge for the local Ugandan but the lack of food and basic needs because of the lockdown. Prices for food and other necessities like soap, medication etc, have doubled and there is also a shortage of basis necessities. People who could, walked to their villages did so to avoid being caught in the crisis.
At Abba Father’s House
Franky speaking we’re praying for God to end Covid-19 completely because the challenge of managing the spread of this dreadful virus with so many children is unimaginable.
Like most part of the world, AFH celebrated Easter under lockdown but we thank God that it went well and there was enough provision for the children and staff to have fun. In order to support the widows and vulnerable neighbours, AFH donated meat from our pig’s herd and money donated by Juliet was used to buy food which was distributed to help them celebrate Easter. However, that was like a drop of rain in a desert due to the ongoing shortage. We’re praying for financial support which will help us to have enough for the home and to help our vulnerable neighbours through this tough time.
Although the home grows some food, what the home produces is very little compared to what is required to fend for children and staff. We tried to stock some necessities but we’re soon running out as lockdown is ongoing. Food, soap, loo paper, first aid, and disinfectant are some of the items much needed by the home. We would like to be able to re-stock before the markets run dry to help us go through the lock down period. We started rationing what we have in order to be able to keep the children alive and we will be grateful for your help.