Published on 13th July 2016 by

Water Is Life (2010): When wells fail, people of the DRC resort to drinking from local rivers, resulting in high infant mortality.

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The fabled Congo waterways have long been celebrated as a vital commercial lifeline for the people of the DRC. Yet the idyllic image is deceptive – the contaminated water is killing the population.

The well in the village of Kapumba has been unusable for over two years, forcing residents to drink from the contaminated river. The result is a horrifying level of infant mortality: “They have stomach cramps and fever. They often cry the whole night through”. The work of European NGOs and local charities offer a glimmer of hope, but with no help from the state this fragile infrastructure is just a drop in the bucket.

ORF – Ref. 4916

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