As the fight against fistula intensifies, Women at Work (WAWI) under the stewardship of Ms Halima Namakula alias Maama Halima has together with Global Peace Foundation and UNFPA awarded eight men who have stood with their wives in the battle against fistula.
The men, whom Ms Namakula and WAWI regard as fistula champions, were given medals at Hotel Africana in Kampala, as a gesture to encourage men to stand by their wives instead of shaming or neglecting them when they get the condition.
“We seek to put a stop to isolation, we seek to stop the shame and perhaps end fistula but this can only be achieved by encouraging men to stand by their wives,” Ms Namakula said.
The initiative that was launched in 2017 by the Speaker of Parliament, Ms Rebecca Kadaga, has been awarding champions on an annual basis. Ms Namakula noted that the move has encouraged men to speak out and also support their wives.
Abubaker Kaluuma, a husband to a woman who lived with fistula for five years, revealed that the condition is a challenging and traumatising one, but that men’s involvement can help women stand strong and overcome the trauma.
Chapter President of Global Peace Foundation Uganda and Peace Service Ambassador Mr. Milton Kambula, before handing over the medals said that no man should divorce his wife due to any illness because getting sick is natural.
“I congratulate the men for standing together with their wives in midst of uncontrollable flow, after giving birth,” Mr Kambula said.
He also saluted Namakula who has made a big change in the women’s lives, as well as WAWI senior members Annet Nandujja, Grace Asaba, Jackline Natukunda and Doreen Kiconco Muliisa for their good work in the fight to end fistula.
Ambassador Kambula also shared some of the challenges faced in marriages including infidelity, domestic violence, poverty, HIV/Aids, disrespect and lack of unity between parents and children.
Ms Namakula revealed the fistula champions will grace the UNAA Convention this year in Chicago, USA to share their testimonies.