As climate change draws the attention of the entire world, Liberia’s National Disaster Management Agency (NDMA), has disclosed that 52,036 people have been affected by heavy flood from July of this year to present.
The disclosure was made by Augustine Tamba, NDMA’s Executive Director at program marking the observance of International Day for Disaster Reduction; which was first observed and adapted in 1989 by the United Nations General Assembly.
Research conducted has indicated that Flood is one of the major challenges facing some parts of Liberia, mainly during the wet season.
However, NDMA’s Deputy Executive Director said, they are working tirelessly to promote a global culture of risk-awareness and disaster reduction in Liberia, under the theme” reducing disaster economic losses.”
According to him, the continuous flooding which has created a humanitarian crisis in Liberia, and has affected five counties should not be ignored because; flood situation needs urgent and workable remedy due to the huge risk it poses on lives and properties.
“Liberia’s flooding situation has begun to reduce after the July and August rains victimized scores of persons. This growing humanitarian situation has contaminated existing water points which gave birth to water-borne diseases, coupled with mass displacement and food insecurity in most of the affected areas,” he pointed out.
He continues “before the August downpour of rain, a high precipitation in July caused mass displacement of people and affected 52,036 people with reported death of one, water points polluted and properties damaged; thereby, causing serious humanitarian crisis in several communities in Montserrado, Margibi, Bomi, Grand Bassa, and Sinoe Counties.”
The NDMA’s Deputy boss further explained that the humanitarian response process started relatively slow, however, he noted that real intervention has been made relative to the supply of relief food and nonfood items, health, and hygiene materials, as well as cash transfer to 75 percent of the affected people.
“There are still gaps which have brought a high cost of livelihood of affected communities that need to be filled. These include, but not limited to: logistical support to gather date of victims in Sinoe County, no funding to compensate volunteers of emergency, no capacity to collect and analyze data,” he mentioned.
Tamba wants timely preparation during this dry season to address fire, pest infestation, air pollution, epidemics, sea erosion, and unexpected bio-chemical outbreaks, among others.
He also sent a passionate plea to the Ministry of Education and the Liberia Institute for Public Administration (LIPA) to see reasons to teach disaster education in both high schools and universities, considering the threat disaster poses against lives and properties.