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Heatwave: Borno IDPs children urinate with severe pain

Children of IDPs in camps in Maiduguri scream with pain while urinating, due to the persisting intense heatwave which fluctuates between 42c and 46c in…

Children of IDPs in camps in Maiduguri scream with pain while urinating, due to the persisting intense heatwave which fluctuates between 42c and 46c in recent days.

The inmates of the camps now twirl in the blistering heatwave, with children requesting for drinking water no fewer than five times at night before daybreak, according to mothers interviewed.

Majority of camps inmates strip near naked, especially midmorning and late night in desperate effort to mitigate the effect of the heat, Kanem Trust has observed.

As soon as the day breaks, the male inmates stumble over each other in a rush for available spaces under trees and other structures that provide some shade.

“Staying in the tents in this severe heat during the daytime is unbearable because the materials which the tents are made of generate and conduct heat,” Babagana Bulama, an IDP at Madinatu Camp, complained to Kanem Trust.

“Even the fortunate inmates occupying corn-stalk shelters also suffer because the bare sandy ground generates hot steam. This is why as soon as the day breaks we all rush out for every available shade in the camp.”

Adamu Hassan, at Al-Miskin IDPs camp, said virtually all IDPs flood out of their shelters at night with their families in the struggle for available open space and, in the process, about five families get squeezed in open space available for only three.

“Most of us often wet the very hot sandy ground before spreading our mats or improvised beddings, perchance we will achieve some cool comfort to enable us sleep, but the sandy surface soon begins generating hot steam to ensure that we achieve no comfort,” Adamu Hassan complained.

“This is why we strip near naked before we could achieve some sleep or at least the barest comfort that only stops you from screaming with heat for a little time, but before long, you begin to scream.

“Women and children scream at night because of the intense heat,” Hadiza Rabiu, at Madinatu camp complained, saying, “children request for drinking water at least four to five times before day break.”

She said: “At night you hear children screaming with pain while urinating.”

Hadiza said female IDPs now cook lunch in the morning when it is bearably hot, “because you dare not try that when the heat attains its peak by noon.”

Kanem Trust gathered that IDPs complain of stomach ache due to the heat.

“It is possible for the children to experience pain while urinating because the heat leads to loss of fluid through sweating, and the heat becomes concentrated during urinating,” Dr Lawi Auta Mshelia, the Director of Public Health in the Borno State Ministry of Health, confirmed.

“Insufficient intake of water compounded by increased loss of fluid through sweating because of the severe heat leads to urinary tract infection; so this could be why the children experience the pain while urinating,” he said.


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