Dozens of Ugandans Die After Eating Wild Cassava in Karamoja

Although Ugandans have been advised to start eating cheap Cassava instead of expensive wheat products in these days of rising commodity prices, this was about cassava strictly grown in their gardens or sold in credible markets.

Already, over twenty hungry people in Kotido district have died in less than a week have been reported dead after they ate poisonous cassava. The desperate Karimojong, whose region has been the worst hit by the current situation triggered by the Ukraine crisis which has seen fuel and consumer commodity prices rising since March is also reported to have started eating wild animals, much raising the concern of Uganda Wildlife Authority.

The hunger in Karamoja is extreme because the region missed out on the planting season because of prolonged drought and insecurity. It has been quite risky going to the gardens as one can be killed by the angry cattle rustlers who are suspicious of everybody as they could report their presence to security forces that are conducting a disarmament exercise. 
But matters have also been made worse by the suspension of food supplies to the region by traders in protest against attacks by warriors on their vehicles.

Kotido district leaders have said that they have not yet conducted forensic investigations to specify the toxicity of the wild cassava but all the dEAD are either infants below seven years or the elderly above sixty years. But what is certain is that all the twenty-plus victims had eaten wild cassava before their death.

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