from ARMANDO DOMINGOS in Maputo, Mozambique
MAPUTO, (CAJ News) – MOZAMBICANS fleeing terror attacks north of the country are putting additional strain on health and water infrastructure in urban centres where they have sought refuge.
Humanitarian organisations are increasingly worried at this rapidly deteriorating humanitarian situation in the Cabo Delgado province.
More than 800 000 people have been displaced since last year, following a dramatic surge of the conflict perpetrated by Islamists in the resources-rich region.
The terror attack on the coastal town of Palma in March caused the displacement of more than 60 000 civilians.
A majority have fled to Montepuez, Mueda and Nangade, which have been overwhelmed.
Jose Antonio Albino, Director of Namweto Hospital in Montepuez, was quoted as lamenting that health facilities in the city found it increasingly difficult to provide adequate services to the growing population.
“We need more trained staff; more nurses and the current structure is not big enough to host all. There are many more patients coming from the conflict zone,” he said.
The situation is also dramatic in the Ibo islands where hospitals were destroyed by Cyclone Kenneth in 2019.
Only one health centre and one doctor are left.
People living in nearby islands often struggle to organize and pay for a boat to reach this health centre.
The International Committee of the Red Cross, in partnership with the city of Montepuez, will contribute to build a new water distribution system to respond to the increased water needs.
It is also looking into scaling up its health response in order to offer mental health services to the displaced people.
– CAJ News