By Solomon McGarrell
The Kwakwani Neighborhood Democratic Council (KNDC) on Friday, visited households at the Kwakwani Waterfront and Lamp Island that are severely inundated, to lend assistance in providing transportation to evacuate residents to the Kwakwani Primary School or a family’s residence in Central Kwakwani.
To date, 11 residents have evacuated before the council’s recent visit; yesterday however, many of the residents opted not to evacuate but to stay and brave the flood waters.
When this media house inquired from residents why they are reluctant on moving, this is what they had to say, “I’m accustomed to this, it’s been many years I have been braving this,” Vincent Bartrum told INFO 10.
A young mother with a 6-month-old baby said she’s not willing to move at this time. “The water has to go down at some time, I’ll go through the phase as usual,” she said.
While residents are accustomed to the yearly flooding caused by the May/June heavy rainfall, this year’s has exceeded the most recent ones. Households are now under eight to 12 feet of floodwaters. “This year flood is the second highest in over 25 years,” Juanita Thom, a resident of the Kwakwani Waterfront said.
This media house was informed by several residents, that Kwakwani is having a glimpse of the largest flood the community recorded back in the 1980’s, ” the water was so high, the entire waterfront road, leading to the Berean Tabernacle Full Gospel Church was flooded,” one resident posited.
The regional officials who are also closely monitoring this situation have expressed concern with the current state of water levels and have since engaged the Government and key stakeholders on tangible measures to be implemented to assist the hard-hit communities in the Sub-Region District.
Regional Chairman, Deron Adams said, ” I am saddened by what is happening in Waterfront and Lamp Island, today I have engaged in conversations with the President, Prime Minister and other government officials on ramping up additional flood reliefs and the installation of a Task Force to assess the flood situation,” Adams said.
Adams further added that the floodwaters which have now affected many more households in the Upper-Berbice District since the last assessment in recent weeks, it’s only fit for residents to evacuate to the shelter provided by the KNDC, since the water levels are rapidly rising.
The residents, primarily Lamp Island residents, were informed over the years of the dangers in living at the river bank and were provided with a designated plot of land in “Chine Lane” to have a fresh start. However, many residents have failed to heed the warnings, while others sought it economically viable to sell their plot of land.
Meanwhile in Region 10, other communities that are severely flooded include Rock Stone, Coomacka, Three Friends, Silvertown, Silver City, Speightland, The Wismar Alleys and River’s View. Farmers in these communities have recorded significant losses in their crops and livestock.