Government makes symbolic delivery of land to Xavante amid mourning death in the village of children

Government makes symbolic delivery of land to Xavante amid mourning death in the village of children

[4/10/2013 20:57]


Despite the serious problems which the Xavante from Marãiwatséde are facing in relation to health, governmental delegation visit indigenous land to celebrate the explosion, which took place last January, after nearly 50 years of illegal occupation

The village should be celebrating, but it is time of mourning in Marãiwatséde. Located in the northeast of the State of Mato Grosso, the indigenous land was definitely returned to Xavante in January this year, after the explosion process determined by Justice in 2012 – reason of joy for the more than 800 Indians who now regained the 167 thousand hectares of the area. Day, however, have been of concern. Health in the village walk into low and only at the beginning of year three children have already died.

The conditions vary mainly between vomiting, diarrhoea and malnutrition. According to the nursing technique Sandra Patel, indigenous, 184 0 to 5 years are malnourished in Marãiwatséde, which corresponds to approximately 30% of the children of the village.

In the midst of this scenario, last Friday (5), a Government Committee-made up of the Chief Minister of the General Secretariat of the Presidency of the Republic Gilberto Carvalho; National Secretary of Social Articulation, Paulo Maldos; National Indigenous Health Secretary (Sesai), Antônio Alves; by the Federal Public Prosecutor’s Office Prosecutor of Mato Grosso (MPF/MT), Márcia Barrow Zollinger; by the Special Advisor of the Ministry of Justice (MJ), Marcelo Veiga; and by the directors of the Funai to promote sustainable development (DPDS/Funai), Maria Augusta, Assirati and Territorial protection (DPT/Funai), Julie Azanha-held a symbolic ceremony of “handing over the land to” Xavante. The explosion of it, carried out by the General Secretariat of the Presidency of the Republic, was one of the few positive acts of Government Dilma in relation to indigenous peoples.

“Thank you for allowing us to this moment of joy, of celebration. You can return the lands that are legitimate, “said the Special Indigenous Health Secretary, Antonio Alves, in a speech that also highlighted the health of the children of the village, destoando of the mourning of the Xavante in recent times.

Diarrheal and respiratory diseases, compounded by malnutrition, frames are now the leading causes of death of children in Brazilian villages, according to the first national survey of Indigenous health and nutrition. The study, conducted by the National School of public health Sergio Arouca da Fundação Oswaldo Cruz (Fiocruz/ESPN), points out that the indigenous health indicators are up to three times worse than the national average. The analyses show that a every three indigenous children of 0 to 5 years, presents a severe malnutrition.

Obesity on the one hand, another malnutrition

“At first, indigenous child mama to get going, at least. Now the wide occurrence of malnutrition at weaning, because there is a drastic change in the eating habits of Indian people. Among Xavante this is even more evident, as they had their territory all clipped on islands and there are practically no more hunting. The consumption of rice, soft drinks, biscuits increased a lot. So, you have on one side the obesity in adults and other malnutrition in children, “says the doctor of Pediatry Douglas Rodrigues, Coordinator of the Xingu Project and head of health and environment unit of the Department of preventive medicine at the Federal University of São Paulo (Unifesp).

According to an article published by the researchers of the study on indigenous health in the journal BMC Public Health, disparities between the indicators are related to lack of access to basic services, particularly to poor health conditions in which they live most of the indigenous populations and the lack of access to safe drinking water.

Water in Marãiwatséde is a case. The streams near the village, used by children, adults and seniors for bathing, washing and for consumption are polluted and there is still suspicion of contamination by agrochemicals, sprayed by neighboring farms to the indigenous land. Of the two existing artesian wells, only one indigenous supplies – and not always has water.

“The water issue is directly linked to health problems here. In the morning people take water from the well. Of late, no more water, the Indians take stream water. And when they take water from the stream, increase the cases of diarrhoea, “says Sandra.

Contaminated water

Although water be a major factor for the increase in cases of diarrhoea in the village, Rao warns that in children’s cases, generally, they are viral and its evolution is even faster when the child is malnourished.

“The US takes pro hospital, but after a few days they send us back. Then the disease continues and this is how the children died, “reports Daduwari, son of Damian Paridzané and Councillor of Bom Jesus do Araguaia.

The treatment, often trivial in urban centers, becomes a problem in the villages. Rao recalls that buttermilk resolves to dehydration, but in these cases, needs to be administered slowly by the health team.

Meanwhile, worsens. “We need a solution to the problem of health. This way is very bad. Health is only politics. We are used and thrown. Today the wind is contaminated. Who ended the forest? Was great farmer. Today children are weak and thin. I grew up fat, and high sound. But nowadays with the nature which is our defense. I want health care and water well here. Already we have suffered a lot, “complains the Chief Damian, that since the explosion lost two grandchildren.

For Luiz Soares, Special Indigenous Health District Coordinator Xavante (DSEI Xavante), linked to Sesai, the number of cases of diarrhoea in indigenous populations boils down to a “cultural issue”. Although understand the gravity of the situation, Soares said that the consumption of contaminated water is an option of the indigenous. “Many times, the indigenous sanitation agent forgets to turn on the pump and the population is without water. And they find it best to take water from the stream, even if it is not good, clean, because it is of nature. That’s their culture, “he says.

Pesticides are the villains

The Sesai analyzed the quality of water from wells and streams of Marãiwatséde after complaints about spraying pesticides by plane in the vicinity of the indigenous land, surrounded by soy plantations. “The examination of the water from the artesian well was positive, you can continue using, because the water is quality. But the water of the River, stream, is not of good quality, so it is a water that is contaminated. Are doing an investigation to know if you have pesticide or not, but has a bacteria there, called coliform bacteria, which can cause diarrhea, “warned Antonio Alves during the ceremony of the day April 5.

Mato Grosso is the largest consumer of agrochemicals because it is the largest producer of soybeans, corn and cattle; followed by São Paulo, Paraná, Rio Grande do Sul, Goiás, Tocantins and Minas Gerais.

The situation is so serious in Brazil that, in addition to being found in food, water, soil and air, pesticides were detected in breast milk, in Lucas do Rio Verde (MT) a few years ago. According to the World Health Organization (who), for each registered pesticide poisoning case, 50 others happen but are not cataloged. The who also reveals that about 200 thousand people die every year by ingesting pesticides and other three million suffer acute poisoning.

“But pesticide is another problem. Will not give diarrhea “, Rodrigues. Cancer, thyroid, decontrol of the neurological system in General, deafness, reduced visual acuity and even Parkinson’s disease are some possible health problems caused by the ingestion of pesticides.

A Normative Statement of the Ministry of agriculture and livestock (Map) – IN No 2, 2008 – allows the spraying of pesticides by plane at least 500 meters away from the springs of waters, where they live and where there are breeding. This, for the most part, is not respected, as reported on Marãiwatséde.

Daduwari the fact that the farms are very close to YOU and the continuous use of poison to fight pests in plantations impact directly the health of the community. “All the farms near the village use pesticide. They are 10, 13, 30 kilometers from the village. There we start to have fever, headache. We breathe it, drink it, there is evil “.

Old claims and complaints

Since 2004, the indigenous people and health professionals claim, in vain, improvements in public services assistance in Marãiwatséde. And not only there. The precariousness of the indigenous health care seems a problem unsolved, judging by the recurring complaints ´ made by several indigenous peoples such as the Yanomami, for example.

In may 2012, the Xavante denounced the Federal Public Prosecutor’s Office in Mato Grosso (MPF-MT) health units of the cities closest to the village, as São Félix do Araguaia, Alto Boa Vista, Bom Jesus do Araguaia, Ribeirão Cascalheira, Canarana and well water often boycott the indigenous care. Complaint recently reinforced by nursing techniques in a letter sent to the MPF.

“We could Only wave of internment for the Xavante in well water. Another day had to ask for an ambulance for the city of Bom Jesus do Araguaia and in response to Municipal Health Office told me that it would be ‘ the first and the last time that would send an ambulance ‘, because the municipality does not receive any resources to take care of Indian. The Indians are discriminated against and we, as health professionals, too, “says Lucia Nandi, nursing technique that works at Marãiwatséde Base.

Fourteen years after the creation of a specific indigenous care model within the unified health system (SUS), the situation remains precarious for the Indians that beg for attention worthy, but for professionals who venture in Malawian villages.

The lack of basic equipment to attend to the Indians at the Marãiwatséde Base, the lack of medicines and transportation also are on the list of nurses and indigenous to the MPF, Sesai and Special Secretariat for Human Rights of the Presidency of the Republic.

In the letter, filed this year, nurses report the lack of conditions in which they are required to work and the neglect of competent authorities – once the subject, according to them, has already been forwarded to. According to the document, the clinic serves both to indigenous care as for accommodation of medical staff. Has no lining, nor adequate facilities for storage of utensils. The letter also says that there is a cesspool burst.

“I’ll often Marãiwatséde and never seen open trench. If that happens, the responsibility passes to the health professionals that meet there. They have autonomy to resolve these issues. This is not cause for a crisis in health care, “says the Coordinator of the DSEI Xavante.

In his speech in the village, during the feast of “the land”, the Health Secretary, Antonio Alves promised to solve some issues. Stated that the project of expansion and reform of the health center is ready and that the Sesai will build accommodation for professionals, in addition to allocating more a vehicle for removal of patients in the village.

 ISA, Christiane Peres.


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