Ugandans should ready themselves for El Nino rains and effects expected for the period September to December, with the Mt Elgon region inhabitants warned to vacate dangerous spots where landslides are likely to occur.
The warning of the coming of the heavy rains was made by the State Minister for Environment Dr Gorrette Kitutu on Wednesday at the Uganda Media Centre in Kampala as farmers take care of their new crops for the second season that kicked off in July.
“Sept-Dec constitutes the 2nd major rainfall season in most parts of Uganda. As a result of the expected good rainfall, you are advised that health wise malaria upsurges are expected to increase & increase in livestock diseases and vectors are expected,” she said.
According to the minister, overall, there’s an increased likelihood of above normal rainfall over most parts of Uganda & near normal rainfall in most parts of Karamoja and Southern cattle corridor.
She warned government agencies and citizens to be ready for the effects of the heavy rains.
“There should be very strong structures especially those of schools. I ask hospitals to be prepared for any outbreaks incase they occur. We ask the public to be ready too,” she said.
“We ask Ugandans to be ready and avoid loss of lives. My job is to warn, when I say Jinja road is going to flood, go home early. Western parts of central Uganda have been experiencing isolated outbreaks of showers and thunderstorms are expected to continue,” she said.
El Nino in Uganda is associated with landslides, floods, diseases such as cholera, among others, costing the country billions of shillings. It first hit the country so hard in 1997.