Reliable water key to Iteso-K’jong peace – NGO

Katakwi- Reliable water supply is key for local communities living on the Teso-Karamoja border to realise lasting co-existence, the country representative for WaterAid, an NGO, has said.

“With new innovations on how to provide Karimojong with stable water security, there is now hope that conflicts between Karimojong and Iteso will be no more,” Mr Peter Okubal said last week.

Water sources in the region in most cases dry up as soon as dry spells set in, which in the past, has been blamed for conflicts.

Mr Okubal said the organisation is spearheading construction of a unique water reservoir, which upon completion, will serve at least three communal settlements each with an estimated 1,500 inhabitants and about 6,000 head of cattle.

The efforts
The sand dam is being constructed on River Omaniman at a cost of Shs90,000 in Lomuria village, Lokopo Sub-county, Napak District.

Mr Ronald Bashabe, the project engineer, said unlike the valley dams, sand dams have a capacity to withstand prolonged droughts

“Water is retained in the strapped sand for some good time. It is not easily lost because the river bed is rocky and can last for four drought months,” Mr Bashabe said.

The Katakwi District LC5 chairperson, Mr Robert Ekongot, said resettlement of families previously living in internally displaced peoples camps was difficult due to frequent incursions by armed Karimojong cattle herders looking for water.

“We are happy that the aspect of water security is being considered with all the seriousness it deserves. It is only then that Iteso and Karimojong will have no more issues with each other,” Mr Ekongot said.

SOURCE: Daily Monitor

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