Landmine victims suffering as government help delays

Thursday November 22 2012

By Sarah Tumwebaze

In June 1991, as Mr Ahab Ndathu was inspecting a newly constructed water spring for his community in Kasese District, he stepped on an object, which he later recognised as a land mine, whichhas left him without limb for the last 21 years.

Mr Ndathu said he was in a group of 30 people but was the only one who lost a limb.

“I was the second last in the group. While the rest were able to pass by the landmine, I did not. It hit me and cut off my left limb,” Mr Ndathu recalls. He says he was in Kagando Hospital for a month and later transferred to Mulago hospital where he got a prosthesis (artificial leg).

The 50-year-old and a father of five, Mr Ndathu is the coordinator for Kasese Landmine Survivor’s Association. He says he cannot participate in hard labour.

Ms Lucy Toobalo, a mother of nine lost her leg in 2004 in Agago District. She says she lacks Shs700,000 for an artificial leg becuase the one she has is loose.

While opening meeting on victim assistance in Kampala yesterday, State Minister for the Elderly and Disabled, Mr Sulaiman Madada, said government was committed to helping the victims but their funds were misappropriated.


“We need to work together and ensure all money is used for its intended purpose,” Mr Madada said.