By: Abdulaziz Billow
Somalilandsun – Six months after the port city of Kismayo
in Somalia was liberated from the Al-Shabaab fighters, locals in the town are
still suffering from lack of basic and vital health services.
We toured the strategic coastal city of Kismayo, located
some 500kms south of the capital Mogadishu. Our first visit was Kismayo General
Hospital, the only functional health institution in Somalia’s third biggest town.
There we met with more than thirty patients with some
claiming to have come from towns hundreds of kilometers away in the hope of
finding proper medical care.
Health organizations say Malaria is one of the most
common diseases in the town however no distributions of Mosquito nets to IDPs,
host communities or community households has taken place in a long period of
time. Doctors in the hospital say that majority of patients are old people and
The port city is an important financial hub and over the
past few years, the hospital was not fully functional due to lack of essential
medical equipment and inadequate staff. Not only that doctors operate in a
congested environment as the hospital has few standing structures left after
years of conflict.
Somali lawmaker Abdirashid Mohamed Hidig who comes from
the Lower Juba region however blamed aid agencies for failing to properly
address the crisis.
International health organizations say they are unable to
provide humanitarian assistance to patients there unless the security situation
in Somalia improves.
The Kismayo General Hospital serves as the only
functional health institution in the town and treats hundreds of patients on a
daily basis. But for now all that the people of that city can hope for is the
health and humanitarian crisis in the region will come to an end soon.
Source: Press TV,