By Mukose Arnold Anthony
As many Ugandans are trying here and there to see ends meet, salt miners in Katwe-Kabanyoro Kasese district are disheartened by the continued government neglect over their only income generating activity, making them feel isolated.
Though the miners try to over work, they are also faced with lack of market for their mined product at a price ranging from 500-1500 Uganda shillings for a sack of 50kgs.
David Twebaze a tour guide from Uganda World life Authority told students and activists on a study tour that much as the miners as seen to be working but their work is cheaply appreciated in addition to using rudimentary formula of extracting iodized salt from Lake Katwe one of the few world’s salty lakes.
“Evaporation that comes from down, affects the reproductive organs of our mothers though Makerere University health scholars had advised them to always put on and at a certain time tried to improvise them with sanitary pads but all refused and substituted it with clothes which has affected allegedly affected private parts of some mothers” Mr. Twebaze narrated.
“These people are always complaining that much taxes are being collected from them but the government failed to revive the once existed salt refining factory which was established by the Germans” Twebaze added.
“Evaporation and body dehydration, school dropout, unemployment, poor sanitation, transport and communication and poor technologies are the most challenging key issues to these people in this area” Twebaze said.
Some miners apply super glue and polythen papers as bandage to cover their wounds before stepping into the salt mines an act that is said to be harmful to their health.
This Lake is one of the most beautiful tourism sceneries Uganda has having been created as a result of volcanic eruption and is composed of sodium carbonate a salty mineral with no side effects.