A MINISTER in Uganda has been severely criticized after calling people who died from hunger in that country “idiots”.
Many people have described the remarks, made by Minister Henry Okello Oryem of Foreign Affairs as “sad”.
In 2022, more than 2,200 people died in the country due to hunger and diseases related to a lack of sufficient food in the northern region, according to a report issued by a human rights organization.
However, the minister said that no one should die of hunger in the country, as the country has a good climate and fertile land.
“He is a fool, a complete fool, who can die of hunger in Uganda,” said the minister, in an interview with the NTV Uganda television station on Friday, January 26, 2024.
He explained: “If you work hard, there is land in Uganda. The weather is good, despite climate change. If you work hard by making sure you wake up early in the morning, plow your field, sow seeds, maintain your farm, really, how can you not have food?”
Apart from causing many deaths in the northeast of the country, the situation left nearly 500,000 people in a dire state of hunger.
This is according to a report released by the Uganda Human Rights Commission (UHRC).
The minister’s remarks have drawn a lot of criticism.
On social networks, citizens of that nation and neighboring countries like Kenya blamed the minister for not knowing what was going on in his country regarding the lack of food.
” Sadly the minister made such a statement while he is aware of the drought and the lack of food that happens in some areas,” said Mrs. Harriet Anabo, who is a Ugandan citizen through the ‘X’ network (formerly Twitter).
Journalist Charles Onyango-Obbo described the minister’s remarks as “self-imposed blindness”.
“He knows what is going on in the country due to hunger,” he said.