Name ID 1716

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Pearson, John Hunters of the Plains
Page Number: 061
Extract Date: 25 April 1977

boma near Piaya

He had come from his boma near Piaya because they had heard that some Wazungu - white men - were camped near Nasera. A Maasai man had been attacked by a lion, he said - or was it the other way around, I wondered - and the people in the boma were afraid he would die if he was not taken to hospital soon. Would I help them?

There is of course, only one possible reply to a query like that. There is no way you can, or would want to, refuse your help. But before agreeing I wanted to know a little more about what I was letting myself in for. Piaya I had heard of but never actually visited, so I had only a vague notion as to its whereabouts. `How far is your Manyatta?' I asked. They didn't know how far their village was. `How long had they walked to get here?' A discussion followed. `Three or four hours,' they thought. `Was it in the hills?' `Yes.' `Can I get there by car?' `We will help you,' they replied. `Where did they want to take him?" To Loliondo,' they said as one. `There is a good hospital there.'' How far is Loliondo?' They didn't know.

`All right,' I said, `I'll come. We will start tomorrow morning. It will be quicker in daylight.' `That is good,' their spokesman said, `but it would be better if we went now because the man might die.' I was pretty certain he wouldn't. And in any event, if he was really that far gone I doubted if a bumpy ride across country would do much for him. But I would have it on my conscience for ever if he died. And in any case, the sooner I started, the sooner I would get back.

Extract ID: 4488

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Pearson, John Hunters of the Plains
Page Number: 069
Extract Date: 26 April 1977

We reach the Loliondo Hospital

In daylight the journey wasn't difficult. We found where we had made the original mistake and it was exactly where Lefti Wheeli said it was. But Loliondo was much further on than I had thought - only 16 miles from the Kenya border, in fact. We'd never have made it on the one tank of fuel after first climbing up into the Gols. So at least I had the consolation of being right, even if not quite for the reason I'd originally had in mind.

We reached the Loliondo Hospital at 1 o'clock. The good Dr Wachtsinger came out, examined his new patient, and handed him over to the sisters to clean up. While that was going on he took me off to have lunch. The green lawns, the white paint, the neatness and order after the mud and shambles of the last few days made it seem as if I had suddenly been released from a lunatic asylum. `I'm always telling them not to treat breaks like that if there's a wound underneath,' said the doctor, `but they never listen. And those wounds aren't 3 days old like they say. It has to have happened at least 10 days ago for them to be in that condition. And if it happened all that time ago why didn't they bring him to me in Piaya? I was there last Tuesday.'

. . .

The Maasai's chances of survival would have been pretty slim if he hadn't received medical attention at that stage. In remote areas of this kind you frequently receive requests for help from the local inhabitants. To most of them though you have to turn a deaf ear. Of course, you would like nothing more than to drive one of the elder's wives 8o miles to visit her sick mother. But in the first place you are there to film and not to run a taxi service, and in the second there is always the faint suspicion that the heart-breaking tale of woe with which you are currently being belaboured is little more than a stratagem designed to achieve some quite different end.

Extract ID: 4491

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Guardian (Tanzania)
Extract Author: By Guardian Reporter
Extract Date: 2005-03-14

30,000 Ngorongoro residents "face starvation"

The government has been asked to step in and urgently assist about 30,000 drought-stricken residents of Sale Division in Ngorongoro District, Arusha Region.

Oxfam International said in a statement that assessments carried out in the area the past few months indicate, the drought has already taken a heavy toll on children who are acutely malnourished.

According to the statement, unless the government immediately releases relief maize from Strategic Grain Reserve for the residents, acute starvation is imminent in the Division.

�The children, the elderly and HIV/Aids sufferers are the worst hit. Malambo, Piyaya, Sale, Oldonyo Sambu, Engaresero, Pinyiny and Digidigo areas within the division need immediate food aid," said the statement signed by Oxfam Country Programme Manager Mark Waite.

The telltale signs for the crisis have been there for several months.

The area has not received adequate rainfall for the last two years and large numbers of animals have been dying since last November, he says in the statement.

�This is always the most difficult time of the year for people in this area. However, this year is much worse than usual," Waite says in the statement.

Animals face a high risk of disease and death without adequate feeds.

To make matters worse, animal prices have plummeted dramatically.

�A cow is selling at 50,000/-, only a quarter of the normal cost," Waite says.

Currently, Oxfam is working with local communities in the affected areas to create self-sustainable food sufficiency in future.

The international NGO says it will support the government in logistics if it releases relief grain for the residents from its Strategic Reserve.

Extract ID: 5035