JULY 27, 2009: The Famine in the North a Wake Up Call

Famine in Northern Uganda is a Wake-Up Call for Everybody

SOURCE: The New Vision

By: Norbert Mao

OPINION

Kampala — When the guns fell silent in northern Uganda, we told our people to leave the IDP camps. After being concentrated in these squalid conditions for over a decade, going home was the best peace dividend.

We told them to open their land and cultivate for their own consumption and for the market. Everyone was excited. No more lining up to face the indignity of receiving rations of food from relief organisations.

Heads of households looked forward to reasserting their authority as bread earners by the sweat of their brows. For those inclined to farm for the market, South Sudan beckoned. Our people made the leap of faith and returned to their abandoned homesteads. The lack of shelter did not deter them.

Even though roads, water, schools and health facilities were inadequate, they still moved hoping for the best. With rudimentary tools, they tackled the land that had now become bushy due to disuse. Many of the households that returned home put their faith in farming. But alas, they did not expect the drought that has hit the region. The prolonged dry spell has led to crop failure and poor harvest...

For the full story, please see: http://allafrica.com/stories/200907280131.html

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