Why is SDCard0 internal storage 'empty' [yet not]?

Exploring SDCard0 via the native File Manager or ES Explorer yields 'empty folder'. The phone believes the files are there still, as evidenced by the Settings/Storage info displayed, which shows accurately the amount of space remaining. But the files are not accessible.
Why is SDCard0 internal storage 'empty' [yet not]?-screenshot00082.jpg

On attempting to browse the SDCard0 storage using Droid Over Wifi, there are two error messages
Error!*(12:58:40) Error reading directory: /storage/sdcard0
Error!*(12:59:8) DroidOverWifi does not have permissions to read directory: /storage/sdcard0/Download.

I've been running low on memory to install new apps, and hoped to reallocate some data to external storage. To that end I installed Towelroot, Link2SD, a root uninstaller and SuperSU. I used Towelroot to access normally inaccessible files in ES Explorer, but made no changes. I didn't change any of the partitioning or add or delete any files.

There is an annoying Carrier bootup logo that I hoped to uninstall, but this uninstall was unsuccessful.

The phone isn't writing to internal storage anymore either. It wasn't possible to access Viber images that are/were stored there, or to take and save a screenshot using the simultaneous power/volume down buttons..

Running Android 4.3 on a Huawei Phone.

How do I get the 'permissions' back for access to SDCard0 as per usual?

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