Amref Health Africa renews hope to victims of Lakes state shootings in South Sudan

The Corporate Weekly
September 12, 2014
By special correspondent
Having a mother is precious in life, it means care, comfort, hope but above all love. But in South Sudan many children grow without experiencing all these. One such a child is Nyandior Malou of Diayar Payam, Rumbek County Lakes State.

Nyandior Malou lost her mother when she was barely ten years of age. For her this was a turning point. After the death of her mother her father and her three sisters moved to a cattle camp after life became unbearable, since it was their mother who used to take care of them.

A normal day for Nyandior is to wake up in the morning and gather firewood and drinking water, her older sister in turn cooks for the family.

“I woke up with high fever, so I was given anti-malaria drugs. I then went back to sleep under our tent,” Nyandior said.

Little did she know what was awaiting her.

While she was asleep in the tent, Nyandior says she heard gun shots all over the cattle camp.

“I knew the best thing was to stay where I was, at the tent, the gunshot intensified with bullets flying all over, soon two bullets reached me,” she recalls.

Nyandior was shot at two times on both her legs as government forces wrestled cattle keepers from Dinka tribe in a bid to disarm the later.

Nyandior narrates that she was bleeding after the shooting but didn't know what to do as she feared for her life. When the guns went silent she was taken to Rumbek hospital in a military vehicle.

“The soldiers dropped me here and went,” she painfully narrates.

And that the doctors had no expertise of dealing with bullet wounds and her father was grappled with fear of his daughter not walking again.

“I was told, there was Amref Health Africa doctors here who could help my daughter, and indeed they operated my daughter and am very grateful” said Nyandior’s father.

According to Dr Mapour Mading Amref Health Africa Orthopaedic consultant, Nyandior was anaemic, because of losing too much blood.

“We asked the family if they could give some blood so as to operate her, they were so helpful and we managed to get the two bullets out” says Dr. Mapuor Mading.

Nyandior now will be able to walk again and do her usual tasks.

Her story reflects on the plight of hundreds of innocent children in South Sudan who are caught up in the crossfire.

Due to poor medical attention given to gun related injuries worsened by the nascent health sector in the country, most of these children end up being disabled which affects their mobility an important aspect in human life.

Efforts by Amref Health Africa South Sudan to give hope to such children, is being hampered by inadequate funds.

Should Amref Health Africa get enough funds, it hopes to conduct clinical and surgical outreaches in all the remote areas where conflict has left bullets in the bodies of many.