Namutumba rain kills one, destroys hundreds of houses

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By Judith Amusugut, StepFM/NECJOGHA

Namutumba, Uganda – One person was killed and hundreds of houses were destroyed in torrential rains in the eastern Uganda district of Namutumba.

The dead was a five year old boy Isiko Isabirye son of David Isabirye of Nabisagulu village.

The heavy rains which started last week and has been characterised by hailstones has displaced about 500 households and left thousands of people homeless across eight parishes in Namutumba District. The rain also killed livestock and destroyed crops.
The affected parishes include Budunda, Mpumiro, Nalubabwe, Kizuba, Nakawano, Namuseno, Nawandagala and Buyoboya, all in Bulange Sub-county.

Mwammad Mubale, a resident of Buyoboya,  said the affected families were seeking shelter in churches and schools.

“Schools have been forced to close as the affected families sleep in classes as they wait to renovate their houses which were razed by wind,” Mubale said.
Bumali Muyinda, a resident of Budunda, attributed the destruction to increased deforestation.
“Although the wind was heavy, there were no trees to stop it,” he said. Saleh Kumbuga, the district chairperson, warned of food shortage.

“Time for planting has elapsed and it is now time for weeding. I appeal to government to help people with iron sheets and seeds for tree planting which will in future act as windbreakers,” he said.
Early this year, a hailstorm blew off roofs of about 40 houses and destroyed hundreds of acres of crops in the district.

The hailstorm hit 20 villages, including Isegero A and B, Ndikitwamaila, Namukoge, Busene, Nabikenge, Bakudumira, Nawampiti, Kibaale and Kivule
The Uganda National Meteorological  Authority (UNMA) last month released the seasonal outlook for the September to December (SOND) rainfall season and warned that most parts of the country will receive above normal rainfall.

Meanwhile tomorrow the Uganda Red Cross Society (URCS) in conjuction with the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM) and Food Early Warning Systems Network (FEWSNET) release an integrated emergency preparedness and response plan to respond and mitigate impacts of anticipated adverse weather events in the country.

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