Thousands of resident dwelling along rising sea banks have been uprooted
over the past months due to severe flooding in West Point, Red Hill,
Caldwell, Doe Community, St. Paul Bridge, and Gardnersville along the
St. Paul River and other parts of the country.
The flood has led to massive displacement of residents scattered and now sheltered with family members, while thousands of properties have been destroyed as heavy rains continue to pour.
Accordingly, the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) in its recent report had warned that climate change means the sea level is rising and the rainy season is getting longer, which will lead to a rapidly eroding coastline and more instances of flooding.
Residents living in Monrovia’s seaside shanty towns of New Kru Town, West Point, Slipway, and others areas told the Focus News that the devastating effects of flood are glaring-homes have been swept away and lives have been lost.
The emerging flood has posed serious threat to lives and properties, and engenders restlessness among poverty stricken Liberians. A resident of West Point told this paper that there used to be dozens of homes between her house and the sea.
But sadly, she reflects that over the years, her neighbors have been displaced as the ocean has moved inland and the sea is a thin strip of sand; a beach strewn with litter and lined with the fishing canoes that sustain the community. Most of the homes in New Kru Town and West Point consist of wooden slatted walls, rusting corrugated iron roofs and cloth draped across rickety wooden structures.
The tales of the flooding is pathetic and unbearable among victims, which requires that the government contemplate on providing a sustainable and passive flood defense system to build coastline defenses to prevent the future and worst catastrophe.
The government recently decided to commit tangible resources to build series of sea walls in the Atlantic Ocean to protect communities like New Kru Town from rising sea levels, but that seems costly with an annual budget of US$559 million.
Flooding has cut off piped water to a quarter million people in the capital, Monrovia, displacing hundreds of people and destroying or severely damaging homes.
Therefore, the government must now contemplate on emergency solutions to tackle the rising flood especially in water locked areas to avoid the continuous displacement of people and the destruction of lives and properties.
The emergency solution is imperative to be undertaken by the government to save the future of the people and the nation or else, greedy politicians will continue to donate few bags of rice and bundles of zinc to gain political relevance.
Howbeit, although the country’s budget is meager in terms of tackling all areas at the same time, however, it is noteworthy that the government can begin in worst affected areas, while it seeks funding to do large scale flood prevention.
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