The security problems in Turkana County have facilitated the spread of the Guinea worm disease. The spread of the disease is alarming. The security situation has worsened in the semi-arid area. The security organs are yet to identify a strategy that can sustain both peace and long-term solutions to armed militia men and cattle rustlers.
The initial case of Guinea worm disease was confirmed in Kapoeta district of South Sudan late November by Kenyan government officials. The parasitic thread worm are waterborne infections. An infection symptoms manifests in about a year and subsequent coming out of worms through the skin becomes consistent. Other symptoms of the Guinea worm disease include fever, pain, swelling of an area where the worms will come out through.
The worms come out of the body through the legs and feet. According to health officials the victim undergoes disabling pain and burning sensation. Upon exit, the worm leaves a wound which becomes infected with other bacteria causing disabling of the cohort for months.
Security Threat Factoring Spread
The nomadic aspect of life in Turkana factors poor health and sanitation. Constant conflict between Pokot and Turkana communities further aggravate the health risk. Health officials are at risk during awareness assignments. The insecurity, nomadism, and lack of education form the basis of the easy spread of the disease.
Cattle rustling, fights over water and pasture compound the problem facing health and security officials in their efforts to monitor and evaluate the situation in Turkana. While the security teams patrolling and attempting to secure the hotspots in the county continue to face serious challenges, the risk of a serious outbreak remains high.