Acholi Chiefs Demand Report on Nodding Syndrome Top story

4501 Views Kitgum, Uganda

In short
A report posted on the CDC website shows that the teams documented that Nodding Syndrome is a novel complex epilepsy syndrome, and that the head nodding was a direct manifestation of seizures that cause a brief lapse in muscle tone due to alterations in brain function.

Ker Kwaro Acholi, the Acholi cultural institution has asked government to release its findings on the causes of nodding syndrome, a mentally and physically disabling condition that attacked hundreds of children in Northern Uganda.

Okin Polly Phillips Ojara, the Prime Minister of Ker Kwaro Acholi said the delay in releasing the findings is disturbing. He was speaking to families of the affected children in Tumangu village in Akwang Sub County in Kitgum district.

Okin said that although the Center for disease Control (CDC) conducted thorough investigations on the mysterious health condition, very little information has been released to the affected communities about the disease. Even the fate of children taken to America from Lamwo district for medical examination has remained unknown, Okin added.

He said that Rwot David Onen Achana II, the Acholi Paramount Chief is urging government to make public the official findings of the Center for Disease Control-CDC.

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A report posted on the CDC website shows that the teams documented that Nodding Syndrome is a novel complex epilepsy syndrome, and that the head nodding was a direct manifestation of seizures that cause a brief lapse in muscle tone due to alterations in brain function.

It adds that children living under the poorest conditions where there is not enough food, pure water, or decent housing seem most susceptible to this condition, which causes uncontrolled head nodding, seizure-like activity, and in many cases, death.

CDC said it is continuing to investigate the disease further to identify the underlying cause in the hope of improving the management and curing the illness through effective treatment.

 

About the author

Peter Labeja
Peter Labeja has been a practicing journalist for the last 13 years during which he has covered part of the brutal conflict which bedeviled Northern Uganda as well as the painful transition to Peace thereafter. Emerging post conflict issues such as land rights of under privileged widows and orphans, challenges of access to social services in the immediate aftermath of Lord’s Resistance Army conflict in Northern Uganda.

Labeja is now the Northern Uganda Bureau chief in Acholi Sub Region since 2014 - Gulu, Amuru, Nwoya and Omoro districts as well as South Sudan falls within his areas of jurisdiction. He previously worked with The Vision Group for four years.

Labeja’s major career interests are in Climate Change; Agriculture and Environment - natural resources such as Water, Oil and Gas; Transitional Justice; Human Rights, Democracy and Governance as well as South Sudan’s humanitarian crisis. In 2013, Labeja was awarded a prestigious Pan African Journalism Award for excellence in journalism at United Nation’s UNEP headquarters in Nairobi, Kenya for Climate Change and Health Reporting.