Uganda: Unma Warns On Water-Borne Disease Threat As Rains Begin

With the seasonal March to May rains set to start in earnest, the Uganda National Meteorological Authority has warned of a potential increase in water-borne diseases like bilharzia, malaria and diarrheal diseases like cholera and dysentery among others.

According to George William Omony, Director of Applied Meteorology at UNMA, a spike in water-related diseases is to be expected with the onset of the rainy season.

“Water sources are likely to get contaminated because of the excessive rainfall,” he said.

He urged proposed a series of measures to avert disease outbreaks.

“We encourage routine water treatment at all levels to avoid the outbreak of these diseases,” Omony said.

Farmers have also been advised to plant early in order to optimise the available water and also to make their seed selections based on the rainfall characteristics in their areas.

“They should get to know when the rain will start and when it will peak in order to make the best selection of which seed to plant,” Omony said.

Since December last year, several parts of the country have been experiencing dry spells with very little rainfall in some parts of the country in the month of February.

However, the Uganda National Meteorological Authority warns that communities in landslide-prone areas and those that normally experience flash floods like Kampala could suffer a similar fate during the course of the rainy season.

“Flood-prone areas should undertake integrated flood-management, preparedness and mitigation strategies,” Omony cautioned.

The country is expected to experience near normal to below normal rains this year, UNMA has predicted.


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