As a safeguard to curb the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), all lodges in Elegu border town were closed in March. But Kassim Akule, the LC I chairperson of Lorikwor West village in Elegu explains that now, the illicit business is being transacted inside trucks as hundreds of cargo drivers arriving from South Sudan spend between two and four days awaiting clearance.
One commercial sex worker said that some of the truck drivers have families in Elegu and because of the restriction imposed on them, they are only able to meet their sexual partners in trucks at night.
Amuru district chairperson Michael Lakony says that some of the truck drivers meet with the sex workers in rented grass thatched huts while others prefer to use their trucks as lodges making it hard to enforce presidential directives.
"And now since we closed the lodges and as the truck drivers line on the road, by evening time you find the women strolling as if they are going to Gulu town. And in the truck is where they sell themselves, inside. Security cannot man and say; where are you going? It is quite difficult. The delay of the trucks to line along the roadside for 3 days is the risk that our community members are getting." says Lakony.
The district Woman MP Lucy Akello, asserts that district leaders backed by security are finding it extremely difficult to regulate the illicit trade but said the authorities are liaising with relevant development partners to conduct intensive counselling among the sex workers.
Last week, the minister of Health Dr Jane Ruth Aceng rallied Amuru leaders to conduct comprehensive risk communication and community engagement to help mitigate the possible spread of the contagion.