Easter Equatoria State, News

Economic hardship hits Magwi returnees

By Gladys Fred Kole


Returnee women, who attempt small-scale businesses in Magwi County, Eastern Equatoria State, are raising concerns of encountering economic challenges.

On return to their hometown after seeking refuge in neighboring Uganda, the women are urging the government to intervene to address the situation.

Grace Abalo, a market vendor at Magwi Center highlighted the steep rise in prices that has made the cost of living unaffordable.

Abalo also hinted on financial strain that has become so severe to an extent children are denied access to education due to parent’s inability to pay school fees.

“You get our children at home now; we can’t afford to send them to school; most of them are at home. As you’re looking for food, school is demanding fees. In my case and that of some people, we have resorted to letting them eat the little we get at home instead. It is really hard,” Abalo stressed.

She pointed out that while the government has acknowledged the economic challenges related to inflation and fluctuating foreign exchange, they have yet to effectively address the issue. This instability is already impacting people’s ability to sustain themselves economically.

For her part, Irene Aber, who is also a returnee, said that they had a tough life in the camp; that’s why they opted to come back voluntarily, and now the situation is becoming more tough back home.

“Last year we cultivated but didn’t yield properly because of the dry season; there’s hunger all over. But now that it is raining, we pray, and we are digging hard to ensure that there’s food.” Aber underscored.

She noted that, at least when they had just returned last year, the situation was a bit manageable compared to this year.

“Now, with the crisis of the dollar, when we came back, at least things were okay, but now life is hard. But what can we do? We shall just rather live like this.” Aber expressed.

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