Kindly allow space in your news outlet for an important issue of great concern to many people in Sierra Leone and abroad. I believe public health is extremely important because a healthy nation will produce more and a sick nation will produce less. Let me start with sanitation, which has been neglected by many of our governments. May be they saw the problem and turned away from it or they saw it as unsolvable one so it must not be tampered with in any way.
It is noted that mosquitoes helped saved Sierra Leone from white domination like it happened in Rhodesia and other places, there is a medal in their honor, but these same mosquitoes are now powerful and they have taken power from the elected leaders and servants. They have become so powerful that one can hear sick people groaning everywhere in the country. It is a shame for a quest to be greeted by mosquitoes in the heart of the capital city Freetown, but this is true and it has been that way for long especially during the dry season months.
The mosquitoes are pampered and encouraged to breed everywhere especially in Freetown where sanitation is extremely poor. The brooks, bays and market yards have become the luxury places for mosquitoes, rats, flies and many deadly pests especially during the dry seasons. The odor from these places is devastating and unbearable but human beings dwell with it because it is live with it or quit. How about the sewage in the cities? Those are the worst places because the filth piles up so high that the stagnant waters in them become the swimming pools for mosquitoes, cockroaches and rats. Does it cost much to clean those places and save lives or they are left so more people will die of malaria and other diseases so the population growth will balance? I believe it will cost less and money will be saved for other purposes.
In my next article I will talk about the deadly diseases of measles, cholera, cowpox, amoeboid dysentery and sleeping sickness mostly in the provinces. I find this subject an important issue because one third of the population in the provinces are dying of diseases that are no longer major problems to eradicate if government and the people make constant efforts. It is sad because in many areas people must live with it or die; drink contaminated water from dirty wells and from rivers or die of thirst. This is the time for all concerned Sierra Leoneans to point out some problems to the government so actions will be taken to solve them.
Sorie M. Jawara.