Oola Andrew Keith: What COVID-19 is doing to my dream

What COVID-19 is doing to my dream

Essay from Jeremiah Lucas Opira Memorial Contest 2021

Author: Oola Andrew Keith
Winner, Category 3

Talking about Covid-19, is something that has dwindled productiveness and money from people’s hands, the moment I came across this topic, I felt interested to participate in the contest as moments ticked by;

Thanks a lot to Jeremiah Lucas Opira Foundation for giving us this platform to air out and share our ideas about Covid-19 to the communities and the whole world at large.

Becoming a businessman is my dream, where I plan to open a business that deals in buying and selling agricultural produce within my district. When the corona virus broke in the country, there were a lot that went down both negatively and positively, but most were negative, because many plans and programs failed. Myself, I had a plan of dealing in purchase of agricultural produce for example maize, Simsim, G’nuts among other things. I wanted to do that but all were blown away by the outbreak of Covid-19.

I had planned to move from one village to another to purchase the food items mentioned above, and then later sell off to nearby primary and secondary schools as well as vocational institutes within the district and beyond.

"Many lost their lives by security agents such as police and army men in one district after another."

The first lockdown outrageously blocked the movement of people from one district to another, making it very difficult to purchase commodities and sell at profit. Most people could not sit at home and look on, this forced a lot of them to come on streets, many lost their lives by security agents such as police and army men in one district after another. Innocent people were beaten, yet the government failed to help supply this people with basic needs during the Covid-19 period.

Then came the second lockdown, that was the worst thing that has ever happened to me, where eventually all places of worship, disco halls, and movement of passengers from one district to another was restricted, these Covid-19 restrictions also affected workers in that their numbers were reduced to suit the government guidelines of minimizing the number of staffs to cut the spread of Covid-19. As a result, many workers lost their jobs since there was no proper budget for them.

Not only me in person that Covid-19 has affected, even in our communities here, it has contributed to domestic violence in many homes in different parts of the country, and reached to a level where children are neglected and left to move without parents taking care of them. It also brought to a slogan in Luo language called “Aguu” meaning street child, where children move away from their respective homes to urban areas looking for good life and stay, at the end they form gang groups and trap people on their way to their homes in the night.

"Many workers lost their jobs since there was no proper budget for them."

All these happening in the name of Covid-19 outbreak in the country, and government’s lack and also poor handling of situations amidst the Covid-19 pandemic.

However along the way, the government through the president’s office, sent some relief funds to people, referred to as “Nabanja Money” by many people, but the relief fund did not reach all the targeted beneficiaries due to greed and corrupt nature of some government workers. They registered only their friends and family members to benefit from the project. A lot of people especially the most needy ones had to miss out on the funds. Information reached the president’s office, and he directed that the culprits should be dealt with, but all the efforts were blown away by wind, as nothing was done completely.

So far I am just recollecting myself from the pandemic, since Corona virus has come to stay, it is worst that lockdown and curfew times have been uplifted because nearly two years of lockdown was not a joke. So my humble request to the community now that the lockdown has been lifted, is that we should struggle hard and work for our lives to become better.

"The relief fund did not reach all the targeted beneficiaries."

Let use this opportunity to engage in productive work even if the Corona virus is still living amongst us and still continuing to torture people underground in different parts of the country.

Lastly, great appreciation to Jeremiah Lucas Opira Foundation for this wonderful eye opener to our community, especially for the young generation to share their ideas and opinions on the impacts of Covid-19 that almost affected everyone as well as different sectors nationwide.

JLOF works to improve opportunities for disadvantaged, vulnerable communities.


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