The Kabaka of Buganda, His Highness Ronald Muwenda Mutebi, has cautioned people intending to get married or those intending to have children together to test for sickle cell genes before marriage in order to avoid getting equally carrier partners and eventually giving birth to children with sickle cell diseases.
He made the statements during his birthday run at Lubiri, Mengo which attracted thousands of people including; the leader of opposition, Dr Kizza Besigye.
“We advise the youth couples who have intentions of getting married, to first test for sickle cell genes. In the same spirit, we call upon the parents of children with sickle cell disease, take good care of them, provide them the required health nourishments,” he said.
Five years ago, the Kabaka through the Buganda Kingdom started the Kabaka’s birthday run, where proceeds from the run are donated towards sickle cell treatment among Ugandans.
Launching this years’ Kabaka run, slated for April 7, the Katikkiro of Buganda Charles Peter Mayiga, explained that sickle cell disease is a major health problem because it is widespread in the country, where the abnormal gene has a prevalence rate of between 2% and 30%, which explains the high mortality and morbidity due to the disease.
Stressing the urgent need to tackle the disease, Mayiga called upon the public to continue making efforts to fight against blood diseases in the country.