Nile River Greatness

Nile River Greatness
Cows grazing in Nile basin land

Monday, November 2, 2009

Health Calamity! South Sudan has only one optician


Health Calamity! South Sudan has only one optician

By Lodiong Morris

Early in the morning patients have gathered in the optical ward (eye unit) waiting for the only optician in the country. It’s not only the locals within Juba but tens of thousands coming from all the ten states of southern Sudan.

This is at Juba teaching hospital, the country’s oldest hospital that served during the 21 years of civil war between the South and the North. It was the only major hospital that was working despite the upheaval the staffs were undergoing when Khartoum government backed militias in Juba penetrate into the hospital the nurses were not spared they were caned, flog, for not treating those from operation the nurses were accused of being pro the then rebel termed to be thugs then.

Today the twist is different the past days have gone life has to get on with open access to medical assistance those using herbs then now come for treatment in the country’s biggest hospital.

In the eye unit the nurses were not so rude may be because they were not pressured or paid promptly there was no much work ones the South Sudanese optician who lives and work in Zimbabwe leaves there was no much work to worry them, only the task was to sit and tell patients who have travelled miles away from Juba that the doctor will be coming or has travelled.

Paul Loke Lokoro around 65 years old opshalneric clinical officer said they only have one optician dealing with surgery Dr. Wani Mena. He comes home to his country to voluntarily help the patients that dearly needs him.

Loke said they receives a total of about 25-25 patients daily from different states but not all were operated because the doctor doing that cannot handle the great number that comprises of all the age sects as he voluntarily work and could always be demanded by his employers in his second country.

He said they were only three ophalneric clinical officers in the whole of South Sudan, one Baranda Mach Kangi works in Buluk School of the blind, Juba he treats some of the sight problem in the school while the rest work in Juba teaching hospital with hardly any knowledge to operate.

One other biggest challenge he said was lack of transport facility for them to move to all the ten state main hospitals to carry out the medical treatment to avoid the mobility of the citizens whom poverty will force them to be blind.

Christian blindness vision the only organization helping the blind in Juba teaching hospital stocks the pharmacies according to the clinical officer the support wasn’t enough as more cases were reported.

“Our pharmacy is being stock by Christian Blindness vision but its providing not much because the demand is too high many people are reporting sighting problems from all the states we need more assistance” he said

South Sudan sight problem according to Dr. Wani Mena were being cause by diseases like Cataract, trachoma, onchocerachas, reflective error and childhood blindness with majority case from Western equatoria and western Barhel Gazel States however these states lack professional health personnel to treat the sickness patients thus travel to Juba for the treatment.

Mena also said the only treatment they give to patients was the evisceration (Eye washing), surgery in some cases and the use of eye glasses.

At the age of 25 Charles Peter from Munduri East, Western Equatoria State said he had been suffering for seven years, according to him he moved to several health centers in the state including the state’s main hospital but there was no proper treatment for his eyes.

Peter said it took him lot of money contributed by the family and well wisher to come to Juba. He was optimistic that his problem would be rectified because he learnt that many people operated have been relieved.

“I come from Munduri I cannot see well the disease has taken seven years I cannot see well, I moved to all the hospitals including Yambio state main hospital but I did not get the right medicine for the disease they told me to come for operation” Ruati said.

Achol Mary a patient from Yirol appealed to the government of South Sudan and any humanitarian body to extend the service near because there were other patients back who cannot afford to travel to Juba for the operation.

“There many people there they cannot come up to Juba let our government should take this service near because most people cannot afford to come up to Equatoria here” she said.

South Sudan medical field is virgin the few doctors present are engage in their various activities just like the teachers in government schools they too have deserted the field blaming the government for failing to pay them on time including poor condition of work.



By Mugume D Rwakaringi

Barely a decade and a half after a turmoil that led to genocide which led to about 1000.000 losing their lives and the breakdown in all sectors of development, Rwanda’s economy and Investment climate has had a steady development. The recent Doing Business report conducted by World Bank ranked Rwanda as the best business reformer, after jumping spectacular 76 places to establish herself among the 100 best reformers at the 67th position.

Rwanda President: Paul Kagame:
Rwanda is popularly known as ‘the land of a thousand hills’ because of its many hills which form tourist attractions. The landscapes in this green country are truly incredible.

People who have got a chance of visiting Rwanda have admitted that the Country is well endowed with natural beauty especially the nature of Rwanda’s mountains, its climate is also a remarkable one; blessed with a relatively cold climate-not so cold though, no wonder Rwanda has been termed as the Switzerland of Africa.

This is evidenced by a wide variety of wildlife. The Volcanoes National Park, in northern Rwanda is home to the world’s largest number of endangered mountain gorillas. Numbering in the hundreds, the gorillas live in a protected area, free from poachers.
The Akagera National Park in eastern Rwanda is crowded with wildlife both large and the hospitable people who have a great respect for foreigners.

It is however not this natural beauty that has led to Rwanda’s steady growth but rather the political climate for example of no tolerance to corruption, Transparency International recently recognized Rwanda’s strong commitment to fighting corruption.

It has however not been easy for this land locked Country. In 1999, the Rwandan economy stagnated due to a combination of factors, including the increase in world oil prices, a decrease in world coffee prices.

Recently while Rwanda’s President H.E Paul Kagame remarked that for Africa to attract more business and move forward in its on-going transformation, the continent must embrace good governance that promotes accountabiltility. This singles out that Graft has been the major hindrance to Africa’s development and Investment attraction.

Surprisingly even with the present World economic crisis, Rwanda has had a stable growth quoting a GDP of almost double figures (9%) in the last quarter with per capita incomes for individual Rwandans growing above $500.

Rwanda introduced major reforms in several areas, according to Doing Business 2009. It streamlined construction permitting for the second year in a row by combining the applications for location clearance and a building permit in a single form and introducing a single application form for water, sewerage, and electricity connections. This reduced both the number of procedures and the time required for dealing with construction permits.

The time and cost to register a property also fell. A new fixed registration fee was introduced, and centralization of the tax service reduced the time to obtain a certificate of good standing, the report noted.

Rwanda facilitated trade by extending the opening hours of the customs border offices, implementing an electronic data interchange system, and introducing risk-based inspections. Together with growth in the transport sector, this reduced the time to export by five days and the time to import by 27 days—a 40 percent reduction.

Finally, commercial courts began operating in three locations, in Kigali and in the Northern and Southern Provinces, making it easier to enforce contracts.

The Rwanda Investment Capacity which is facilitating improvement in doing business by supporting efficient enforcement of contracts, registration of property and starting a business was allocated Rwf11.9bn (approx. US $ 20 million for a three-year programme designed to reduce the cost and risk of doing business in the country.

The condusive investement climate is paying dividends to Rwanda with a number of reputable companies such as Equity Bank, Prime Bank, Kencall, Nation Media Group and Contour Global company which is ready to invest up to USD 300 million in the energy sector willing to start investing in the Country as early as 2010.

Rwanda’s development according to Vincent Karega, Rwandan Minister of State in charge of trade and investment is not a one’s man show but a combination of all people from different areas of Rwandan society: central and local government technicians, representatives of the private sector and civil society.

Rwanda has seen a dramatic rise in investment inflows, according to the World Investment Report (WIR) 2009. The report released recently said that inflow increased from $16m in 2006 to $67m in 2007 and $103m last year, surpassing for the first time giant Kenya only one position better than fragile-post conflict Burundi that attracted only $1m in foreign investment.

Although Rwanda’s economic structure is characterized by an overwhelming majority of population being employed in agriculture which is limited by scarcity of land, Rwanda’s friendly industrial policy has contributed to the general improvement of Rwanda’s economy.

With the scarce land problem, the government intervened by intensification, land consolidation, fertiliser application, introduction of good variety of seeds and an intensified terracing exercise programs which have yielded remarkable dividends.

The Minister’s advice should not be only for Rwanda, a country with a significant development despite the limited resources available but should be a message for all Africa and for every individual as we strive to attain the MDGs in 2015. With everyone’s effort towards attaining development implemented, then Obama’s slogan “Yes we can”-Develop, can be achieved.



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THE NILE FORTUNE Expanding Business beyond the Horizons • The Nile Fortune Magazine is a business Magazine published by The Active Nation Ltd committed to effective communication through Newsprint. The Nile Fortune Magazine Circulates in the 10 Countries that form Nile basin organization of Southern Sudan and North Sudan, Uganda, Rwanda, Kenya, Tanzania, DR Congo, Ethiopia, Burundi, Egypt and DR Congo with the circulation of over 5000 copies for a population of over 200 million people. VISION Sustainable social-economic development within Nile basin region and Africa in general. Clientele: Governments in the Nile Basin, International and local Investors, Private sector and the upcoming middle class, Local communities, International Humanitarian and relief agencies, Non Governmental Organizations (NGOs), Government Institutions, The business community. MUGUME D. RWAKARINGI MD, NILE FORTUNE MAGAZINE +249-955003929