Monsoon adds to woes of Wanni displaced

By Chris Kamalendran

With the monsoon rains setting in, incidents of snake bites, malaria and dysentery are on the rise among the thousands of displaced people living in open areas in the Wanni, a report submitted by the Regional Director Health Services in Kilinochchi to the government has revealed.

In October alone, 194 snake bite victims were admitted to Dharmapuram hospital, of whom two died while 84 cases of dysentery and 16 cases of malaria were recorded the report said. Many of the displaced, now estimated at 218, 504 are staying in schools, places of religious worship and temporary sheds, the report further said.

Education has also been disrupted with at least 160 schools being closed and students studying in temporary sheds and under trees. According to the report 51 schools are closed in Kilincohchi, 33 in Mullaitivu, 30 in Mannar and 10 in Vavuniya North.

The report also highlights the shortage of drugs in the area adding that items such as oral dehydration salt, oxygen and anti malarial tablets are available at Vavuniya but are awaiting Ministry of Defence clearence to be transported to Kilinochchi.

According to the report fuel has not been approved to the wanni for the past two months. In 2007 the Kilinochchi RDHA office had been provided 15,000 litres of diesel, 500 litres of petrol and 225 litres of Kerosene oil per month, but in August this year the quota of diesel had been reduced to 2,830, petrol to 330 and Kerosene to 75 litres. The shortage of fuel has affected ambulance services and the cold room facilities, the report said.

In spite of the shortage of medical supplies and facilities in September alone, the Kilinochchi hospital handled more than 13,000 OPD cases and 1,925 cases of indoor patients. Meanwhile the civilians fear that with the torrential rains there could be more water-borne diseases as flooded wells are likely to get contaminated and the water unfit for drinking.

They added that at least 75 percent of the displaced persons are living in the open with only a few of the lucky ones moving in with relatives or friends. Meanwhile Commissioner for Essential Services S. K. Divaratne said that moves were currently underway to send material for the setting up of make-shift shelters- and a shipment was due to leave the northern town of Vavuniya tomorrow.

However earlier this week an UNHCR convoy of three trucks loaded with components for temporary shelters was turned away at the Military Omanthai exit/entry. The UNHCR was asked to obtain a fresh MoD clearance for taking such material into the conflict areas.

Top to the page  |  E-mail  |  views[1]
Other News Articles
Crisis over oil hedging deals
Price hikes on scores of items soon
CPC pours out its troubles
Karuna gets Army to screen cadres
Tea brokers await bailout money
Kandy kidnap: Boy rescued in ten-hour police operation
Ministry refuses to recognise Trinity principal’s signature
Global meltdown hits Puttalam factory: 350 workers lose jobs
Melamine net widens to fish feed also
Live telecast on new media rules cropped
Woman found guilty of stealing sister’s Kuwait compensation
Fuel price cut insufficient to reduce fares – operators
Embilitiya paper factory staff without pay; mills remain closed
ICRC will distribute Indian aid
L.C. Seneviratne felicitation at Cinnamon Grand
Monsoon adds to woes of Wanni displaced
Odds and Ends
Ranil reiterates UNP stand on terrorism
Lanka signs MoU with UN for slum upgrading
Eppawala project may draw criticism again
Promises not kept in Budget, say public sector unions
The ordeals of the farmer
Drunken cops assault 17-year-old student


Reproduction of articles permitted when used without any alterations to contents and a link to the source page.
© Copyright 2008 | Wijeya Newspapers Ltd.Colombo. Sri Lanka. All Rights Reserved.| Site best viewed in IE ver 6.0 @ 1024 x 768 resolution