OMORO – About 4,800 people in the sorghum growing community of Amuru Omoro, Gulu, Nwoya and Kitgum that faces serious water shortages during dry seasons have been given 16 more boreholes values at Shs480m, courtesy of the Uganda Breweries Limited.
As part of their Corporate Social Responsibility UBL commissioned the boreholes in Koro-Rom village in Koro Sub-county in Omoro District yesterday.
This development brings to 31 the total of boreholes in the area.
According to Mr Francis Mabonga Director Madji Uganda & Sumadhura Technology the constructor; Gulu got three boreholes, Amuru three, Kitgum four, Nwoya four and Omoro got three boreholes with each borehole costing Shs28.6m.
The four districts are the major areas where sorghum is produced in large quantities. UBL uses sorghum for its different beer brands and Senator brand is specifically brewed from sorghum.
UBL Corporate Relations Manager, Mr David Onyango said the boreholes will change the community’s life positively and improve the standard of living arguing that UBL is committed to providing water, sanitation and environmental sustainability.
“With these boreholes, water supply is not only dependent on unpredictable weather patterns as has been the case but also the communities get safe domestic water through the year helping the people to focus on other economic activities,” Mr Onyango said
Ms Koska Lamwaka, 23, mother of three children and a resident Acoyo Rom in Omoro district said before UBL drilled a borehole in the area the community was relying on an unprotected well.
She said the children were getting diarrhoea, stomach ache and typhoid fever as a result of using water from unprotected wells that the community was sharing with animals during the dry spells.
Ms Grace Acen, another resident said the area of Acoyo Rom in Koro Sub-county normally experiences water shortages during the dry seasons because of a lot of eucalyptus trees planted in the water catchment which have drained the wells by lowering the water table.
The Acoyo Rom LC I Chairman Mr Alphonse Ongom, noted that during the last dry season the communities had a serious water crisis to the extent that people shared wells with roaming animals which exposed them to a lot of diseases, stressing that beneficiaries must use the boreholes carefully to avoid destroying them.
“People who think of vandalising the boreholes will be compared to people committing homicide because water is life and we must guard it while using it sparingly” he said.
The Chairman Orom Sub-county in Kitgum district Mr Quirino Olum political leaders in the sorghum farming communities across Acholi sub-region should promote sorghum production but they should also sensitise their electorate about the dangers of consuming sachet waragi and cheap vodkas, stressing that such alcohol may be harmful to health since the raw materials used for processing them are not known.
Douglas Peter Okello Omoro district chairman who was represented by Mr Francisco Wadok Awori councillor Koro Sub-county cautioned the beneficiaries to guard the boreholes jealousy. “These water sources are now yours. You must make sure that they effectively benefit our communities by keeping them clean and making sure they are repaired whenever they break down,” Okello.
At the end, Mr Onyango challenged the community and political leaders in the post-war recovery regions to continue voicing their people’s demand for services delivery from different companies including UBL to ensure problems are jointly addressed.