South Sudan announces schools closure as heatwave deepens

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Newspaper Article
South Sudan announces schools closure as heatwave deepens
March 16, 2024 (JUBA) – South Sudan on Saturday announced an indefinite closure of all schools due to heatwaves characterized by very high temperatures in recent days. The Health minister, Yolanda Awel Deng said the heatwave could last for two weeks, with temperatures ranging between 41 degrees and 45 degrees Celsius. “The government has decided to take the following measures, one, close down all schools with effect from March 18, two, during the closure of the schools, parents are advised to stop their children from playing outdoors for prolonged periods and they should also monitor children, especially the young ones, for signs of heat exhaustion and heatstroke,” Awel told reporters in the capital, Juba. Heatwaves, the minister said, can acutely impact large populations for short periods, often trigger public health emergencies, and result in excess mortality and cascading socioeconomic impacts like loss of work capacity and labor productivity and can also cause loss of health service delivery capacity. Awel said the disease surveillance department at the national Health ministry has put a system in place meant to detect and respond to cases, adding there are already cases of death related to excessive heat being reported in South Sudan. The Undersecretary in the Ministry of Environment, Joseph Africano Bartel said climate change is becoming a global phenomenon in which South Sudan will experience a lot of temperature fluctuations. Africano advised the public to take precaution against rising heatwaves in the country. He urged developed countries to cut emissions, saying South Sudan will soon experience climate change impact, including heavy rains, floods and droughts. A circular from the Environment and Forestry ministry warns of likely illness and deaths among adult and children should they be exposed to the high heatwaves. According to the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), a heatwave can be defined as a period where local excess heat accumulates over a sequence of unusually hot days and nights. As such, heatwaves amplify many risks, such as health-related or economic risks, including increased human mortality, drought and water quality, wildlife and smoke, power shortages and agricultural losses.
Sudan Tribune
17/03/2024, 07:02
17/03/2024, 17:08
South Sudan announces schools closure as heatwave deepens. (2024, March 17). Sudan Tribune.