Jiggers drive pupils out of school
15 May 2013, 15:42
Jiggers infestation has forced pupils in 17 primary schools in Muhoroni District to drop out of school, Kenya Red Cross Society (KRCS) Western Kenya Region Assistant Secretary General Emmanuel Owako has said.
"It is unfortunate that in this age and time that jiggers infestation can push our children out of school through persistent absenteeism, compounded by the prevailing flood problem in Muhoroni, Nyando and Nyakach," he said.
Following the shocking revelation, Owako led a team of medics to organize a medical camp to treat over 600 local residents and pupils at Homalime primary in Muhoroni.
Speaking at the forum, Owako emphasized the need for promoting hygiene and proper sanitation in an effort to sensitize the locals on the best way to deal with the debilitating jiggers menace.
“Among those who have came out today for treatment are 341 pupils from standard 1 to 8 which translates to 80% of the total population infested with the jiggers,” he stated.
Red Cross also distributed shoes donated by the Top Shoes Company from United Kingdom to curb the jiggers menace, which has not spared even the elderly people in the area.
Muhoroni District Public Health Officer Erick Wafula attributed the jiggers problem to the type of soil.
Several Community Health Workers (CHWs) have been trained on jiggers’ management in Koru and Fortenan.
Muhoroni District Disease Surveillance Coordinator Joshua Adongo said high poverty levels and poor sanitation have culminated in skin infections and wounds exposing the victims to disease and trauma.
Adongo dismissed those who associated jigger infestation with witchcraft urging them to stop misguiding the public but instead emulate the humanitarian support demonstrated by KRCS.
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