[ACNS] The Diocese of Northern Uganda has been praised by the country’s armed forces for its crisis response in support for the thousands of refugees streaming into the country from South Sudan.
More than 38,000 people have reported fled from South Sudan in the past week, including Kenyans and Rwandans. South Sudanese nationals fleeing the violence were received in Elegu and transferred to the Refugee Camp in Adjumani.
The refugees are being transported in a 3 km-long convoy under police and army escort to provide security from rebel activity.
On Friday, the diocese responded to the crisis with an emergency mobilisation of support people providing refugees with water, biscuits, and medical kits. A small medical team from the diocese’s St Philip’s Health Centre provided emergency first aid, while an ambulance was provided to help those seriously injured.
Yesterday, the Uganda People’s Defense Force (UPDF) presented a certificate of appreciation to Bishop Johnson Gakumba for the diocese’s immediate mobilisation following the deadly fighting in Juba.
More than 500 Ugandans from South Sudan are still stranded in the Ugandan border town of Elegu with no shelter, food, water, or sanitation. “Their businesses and resources were looted and they have no way to reach home from Elegu,” the Anglican Church of Uganda said on its website. “Through an emergency grant from the Anglican Relief and Development Fund [part of the Anglican Church in North America], the Diocese of Northern Uganda has fuelled school buses and will begin transporting them to Kampala today, where their relatives can then cater for them.”
The response from the Diocese of Northern Uganda is just one example of how the church is responding to the current escalation of violence in South Sudan.