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Moroto district closes makeshift markets to contain cholera outbreak

FILE PHOTO: Cholera cases are on the surge in Moroto. Drinking dirty water is of the causes of disease

Moroto, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Health authorities in Moroto district have closed all makeshift markets following the outbreak of cholera. The authorities have also banned the sale of local brew in the area.

Cholera was confirmed in Moroto district on May 12 by the acting District Health Officer Charles Onyang Omuudu after seven out of the eight samples tested positive. The acute diarrhoeal disease spreads through the consumption of contaminated food and water.

Common sources of cholera infections include raw or poorly cooked food, raw fruit and vegetables and other foods contaminated during preparation or storage and it mostly spreads rapidly in areas where sewage and drinking water supplies are inadequately treated.

Moroto town clerk Isaiah Tumwesigye says that closing the open markets within the municipal council is meant to prevent the spread of cholera.

The closure of food markets, sale of local brew has affected members of the community who are still coming to terms with the lockdown. Sofia Nachuge, a produce seller in Nabatwa market says the closure of small markets will render more women unemployed and unable to feed their families.

She says that the authorities should have targeted only the food vendors and persons operating a business in unhygienic environments.

Andrew Stephen Oduch and Nesforo Ofwono residents of Moroto town said the closure will leave people poor.

Cholera can be prevented by drinking water that has been boiled or disinfected with chlorine or other suitable products and eating food that has been thoroughly cooked and is still hot when served. Cooked food that has been held at room temperature for several hours and served without being reheated can be a source of infection.

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