An official from the United Nations refugee agency UNHCR has said that Twenty-six refugees from the Democratic Republic of Congo have died in a camp in Uganda from acute diarrhoea, and hundreds more cases have been registered.
The East African country’s refugee population has risen sharply recently as people flood in from eastern Congo, where resurgent ethnic and inter-communal violence has uprooted hundreds of thousands.
Spokeswoman for the UNHCR in Uganda Duniya Aslam Khan, said health workers from the World Health Organisation, U.N. children’s fund UNICEF and Medecins Sans Frontieres had identified “acute watery diarrhoea” in camps in western Uganda.
She said the condition had already killed 26 refugees from February 15 to 19, while 424 cases were being treated.
More than 4.4 million people have been displaced in Congo, in part aggravated by a political crisis sparked by President Joseph Kabila’s refusal to step down at the end of his mandate in 2016.