Colombia Non-Governmental Organization Wayuu Nation president Jose Silva denounced Wayuu children have suffered malnutrition during the pandemic.
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"This scourge in La Guajira is a never-ending problem, and, in this time of the pandemic, it is when the cases of children dying from physical hunger and thirst increase the most," Silva stated.
So far, in 2020, 28 Wayuu children died of malnutrition and treatable diseases, ten of them during the pandemic outbreak in Colombia. In the same period of 2019, two minors died of undernourishment.
NGO representatives warned underage deaths could surpass the official figure because Wayuu people do not report the deaths and conduct funerals under their traditions.
"It seems that COVID-19 has been associated with these issues; not only children die, but also the elderly from pathologies very similar to those presented by the coronavirus," Silva added.
In 2017, Colombia's Constitutional Court decreed the La Guajira situation as unconstitutional and a violation of Indigenous people's rights. However, water, food, and essential supplies scarcity continues.
NGO leaders also denounced that Ivan Duque's administration uses the pandemic as an excuse to neglect the La Guajira humanitarian crisis.