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Karamoja registers 45 cases of multi-drug resistant TB

By Olandason Wanyama

Added 19th April 2018 04:33 PM

Nakapiripirit district has so far 20 cases; Napak 10 and Kotido six. Others are Kaabong with four, Abim and Moroto have two and three cases respectively.

Karamoja registers 45 cases of multi-drug resistant TB

Nakapiripirit district has so far 20 cases; Napak 10 and Kotido six. Others are Kaabong with four, Abim and Moroto have two and three cases respectively.

PIC: Lobut Albino, in-charge TB unit at Moroto Regional Refferral Hospital speaking to patients in Moroto. (Credit: Olandason Wanyama)


KARAMOJA - At least 45 cases of drug-resistant tuberculosis have been detected in Karamoja.

However, Doctors in Africa, under CUAM, an Italian organisation supervising the treatment, have said the cases pose no health risk as most of them are receiving treatment.

Victor Lomonyang, the CUAM programme officer, said the cases were detected in the last 24 months.

Lomonyang said Nakapiripirit has the largest numbers of multi-drug-resistant tuberculosis (MDRTB) in the region.

He added that the district has so far 20 cases; Napak 10 and Kotido six. Others are Kaabong with four, Abim and Moroto have two and three cases respectively.

Lomonyang further said detecting the cases was facilitated by a genes expert machine placed at each hospital in the region.

He added that the medics have been monitoring families to ensure that other members of the household do not get the resistant strain.

"We got a couple in Nakapiripirit, which was diagnosed with the active disease but the children are normal.

Lomonyang attributes the MDRTB to the nomadic life in Karimoja, where persons on treatment migrate and abandon treatment. Some of them reside far away from health facilities, making it difficult to access drugs.

Others reasons include failure to complete the first-line of treatment which lasts for six months, an issue that could turn into drug-resistant TB

The in-charge TB unit at Moroto Regional Referral Hospital, Albino Lobut, urged the public to guard against the lung disease infection.

Lobut noted that in the past two years Moroto district has diagnosed 1,026 people with the disease.

He said unlike the first-line treatment which runs between four to eight months, treatment for MDRTB goes for 20-24 months.

Dr Francis Ogwang, the director Moroto Hospital said drug resistant is hard to treat.

He said patients have to be placed on direct observation treatment for two years.

MDRTB is a form of tuberculosis TB infection caused by bacteria that are resistant to first-line anti-TB drugs; isoniazid and rifampicin.

Rukungiri NRM leaders in crisis meeting over presidents' donations
By Caleb Bahikaho
The Rukungiri district NRM chairperson, Jim Muhwezi has called NRM conference meeting to discuss the issues concerning the visit of the president to the district last Sunday and the donations he gave to different groups that included cars, tractors, boda boda and liquid cash among other things, which allegedly left members divided.
It was reported that the donations left people of Rukungiri especially the NRM highly divided majority of them claiming to defect to the opposition claiming that they have worked for NRM for long and they have rewarded new comers and others who have never done anything for the party.
It was also alleged that most groups that were given money were fighting to distribute the money among the members while others were suggesting keeping the money and beginning borrowing it to members on simple interest.
The RDC Rukungiri, Martin Mugabe admitted that some group members were fighting to get their share and take it to bar for waragi.
"Yes there are some misunderstandings in some members of some groups and at least three people were already arrested and are in police cells for injuring their friends in the respective groups but hopefully we shall teach them and will use the donations profitably," he said.
He denied the allegations that has been circulating that some groups that received things have already sold them. "We are even meeting all the groups tomorrow (Thursday) together with what president gave them and we direct them how to use them and we shall keep monitoring them so that they do its purpose," he said.
The NRM crisis meeting held at Hotel Riverside, the chairperson Jim Muhwezi said after his opening remarks the press will be asked to go out to allow members deliberate freely their concerns.
The meeting has attracted over 600 participants some of whom are not members of conference but concerned NRM supporters who were not happy on how the donations were distributed.
The NRM publicity secretary, Robert Tukamuhebwa who was in charge of registering the groups that benefited from presidents' donation did not attend the meeting as members were seriously on his neck accusing him of neglecting core groups that would have benefited.
"I want to thank you for welcoming his Excellency the president in big numbers and I want to assure those who were not considered that president will come back soon will talk them," Muhwezi said.
It's alleged that over 446 groups have been registered to meet the president when he comes back as promised by district NRM leaders. Micheal Byarugaba former NRM candidate for district councilor for western division is now in charge of registering new groups that did not benefit from Sundays' donations.
Rubabo County Member of Parliament, Paula Turyahikayo did not attend the meeting but has apologized for not coming. Muhwezi said the meeting was mainly to get way forward on the coming by elections of the woman MP so that they defend their seat as NRM.
He said that historical who sit on national conference but hails from Rukungiri are members of the district conference but did not attend the meeting as it was very urgent and they are Joan Kategaya, Zedekia Karokora and Gabriel Kangwangye.

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