YUMBE. The water scarcity in Okubani primary school in Bidibidi zone five refugee camp in Yumbe district is affecting the daily activities of the school.
This was revealed by Mr Geoffrey Andruga, the headteacher of the school during a monitoring exercise early this week.
According to Andruga, the school only depends on tap water, adding that there is no other alternative when the taps dry up.
"We have a shortage of water, especially during morning hours. We have two water points of tap water in the school but we sometimes, get water very late at around 10 am-11 am and this affects the program for cleaning the latrines," he said.
Andruga said once water delays, the latrines can't be cleaned in time and that affects the health of children when the facilities are dirty.
Okubani primary school has an enrollment of 1,340 pupils who are exerting more pressure on the available facilities as the structures are also not enough.
Mr Yassin Andrua, the production officer for Odravu sub-county said it is important for the school to have a water tank to reserve water for sanitation purposes.
"You need to connect the available water tanks to the sources of water such that children are able to have access to water to do cleaning and wash their hands," he said.
Water has become a problem in the settlement resulting in congestion at the water points as the dry season intensifies.
Mr Michael Nabugere, the settlement commandant in the office of the prime minister said there are available water sources in the settlement but attributed the current shortage to the dry season.
"The WASH partners have done a lot in putting up water facilities like boreholes and tap water sources. The current problem we are experiencing is that due to the dry season, the water levels have gone down causing water shortages," he said.
"For the case of tap water, we pump water for some time and then distribute to the users which often takes time. We don't do this purposely but it’s the current weather causing the problem which people should understand," he added.
He said the challenges the refugees are facing will normalize during the rainy season as water levels will rise up.
Bidibidi refugee settlement in Yumbe district hosts about 230,000 South Sudanese refugees who fled into the country since 2013 when fighting broke out between forces loyal to the former vice president Dr Riek Machar and those of President Salva Kiir.