Jonglei State, News

Health situation dire amidst drug shortage in Alali

By Manas James

Local authorities of Alali Payam in Akobo County, Jonglei State have complained about a dire health situation as life-saving drugs are lacking, amidst rising cases of diarrheal and respiratory infections.

In an interview with No. 1 Citizen Daily Newspaper, Peter Oballa Ojulu, the administrator of Alali Payam, said they are in a sorry state with residents only relying on traditional medicines.

“Diarrheal, respiratory infections and suspected cases of Malaria are on the rise,” Ojulu said, adding that the county authority is unable to help the people.

“So, the locals only treat themselves with roots and leaves of herbs and trees. This situation is a difficult one,” he stressed.

According to the Payam administrator, who called for an intervention, the health facility at Alali only received medical supplies in February last year.

“For over a year now, severely ill patients who are not responding to herbal medicines are carried on a stretcher to Ethiopia. Sometimes we buy drugs from Gambella, but they are insufficient,” he said.

One community chief, Philip Omot Jook, said the situation is dire.

“Lack of drugs is a big problem in Alali. Our children are really suffering. Mosquitoes are too much here, and it is also cold, so there are many cases of malaria and stomach upset,” Jook explained.

He noted that the people only have herbal medicines at their disposal, while sometimes community members in diaspora and Juba or Bor donate drugs.

John Okei Okei, a lawmaker at the state legislative assembly decried the dire health situation and echoed the call for assistance.

“There are no drugs at all because our area seemed to have been neglected by government and aid agencies. The last consignment there was our donation as a community,” he said.

Okei, who did not offer more explanations, attributed the drug shortage to the inaccessibility of the area from the state capital.

He appealed to aid agencies to maneuver ways to assess the area and rescue the people with drugs.

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