Umukuka appeals to Bamasaaba to embrace immunization amid polio outbreak

Mbale, (UG):- Polio, one of the contagious diseases is reported to have broken out in Mbale City and the Umukuka has called on the city dwellers to rush and get immunized against the epidemic.  

This was revealed during a high-level stakeholders engagement held Wednesday at the Mbale City Chambers, where the Mbale City Health Officer Dr Moses Mugonya brought to the attention of stakeholders who included representatives of Inzu Yamasaba, World Health Organization, Spotlight Africa, and officials from the Ministry of Health about the severity of the matter.

Dr Mugonya told the officials that so far over 3 people are reported to be down and admitted to hospital with the Polio virus, an outbreak he attributed to low population immunity against the disease and that is why there is this outbreak

A Representative of WHO at the meeting said Uganda has a long history of polio reporting that by the late  1980s, Uganda was at the peak of polio but through Government interventions, the virus had been eradicated and was now disturbed by the re-emergency of the same.

Polio in Mbale city is said to have originated from Garisa Kenya, and it is said to have found its way in Mbale city through business contacts since Mbale is a transit route and some Kenyans may come here on business and the Garisa polio is also similar to the one in Somalia.

The faecal matter from Namatala particularly the Doko sewerage plant tested positive for the polio virus after laboratory tests in Entebbe

This means that those Kenyans from Garissa who may be truck drivers or any category of Kenyans slept in Mbale City and since the polio virus can’t be killed by our body virus once ingested, you end up excreting it in a faecal form hence the current outbreak. 

As a stop-gap measure, residents of Mbale city have been warned not to plant any crops near the sewerage plants since the sewerage points are now contaminated with the Polio virus which travels through faecal matter.

In the interim, the Umukuka has urged residents of Mbale City to take children to the nearest health facility for polio immunization.

In his message through the Inzu Yamasaba spokesperson, the Umukuka pledged to take the polio message to the clans in masabaland and encourage massive immunization of all bamasaba and other other persons within masabaland.

The MOH team explained the Nexus between Polio and cholera since Mbale city had cholera recently, saying both cholera and polio are spread through faecal matter and said the focus should be shifted to the Chinese factories and the Doko sewerage points.

“Polio is a very deadly disease and can kill in a minute especially if it gets to one ‘s chest, generally, the disease causes thinning of limbs which makes a person unable to move and hence if not attended to quickly we shall have many people very useless since they will be down with Polio,” Dr Mugonya emphasized.

“Polio is a disease of humans and not animals,” he added.

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