Jan 11, 2014 News
A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) is calling on Government to launch a National Flood Control Master Plan to offer protection to the populace from the “ravages” of repeated flooding.
APNU, through its leader David Granger, expressed that 2013 was a year in which significant flooding occurred during every month and the Peoples Progressive Party Civic (PPP/C) administration seems unable or unprepared “to implement measures, to identify the causes, notify the populace and to mitigate the impact of this recurrent hazard.”
The party expressed that the effects of the flooding have incurred immeasurable losses to the populace with respect to damage to their homes, household goods, equipment as well as destruction of farms and livestock within the domestic and agricultural sectors.
APNU noted that throughout last year almost no areas were spared from inundation.
Granger highlighted that villages on the East and West Coast of Demerara, the Essequibo Coast, Georgetown and in the Cuyuni- Mazaruni, Rupununi and Pomeroon- Supenaam Regions were all affected.
He added that these floods came in the aftermath of “Great Flood” of 2006, which the PPP/C never conducted an investigation into. According to Granger the destruction that occurred from the 2006 flood cannot be ignored. APNU made reference to a study done by the Development Bank from 1988 to 2006 which highlighted that the “floods affected 965,000 persons and resulted in more than US$663M in economic damage. The ‘Great Flood’ reportedly affected 25 per cent of the national population and caused economic losses equivalent to 60 per cent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for that year.”
Granger articulated that since the “Great flood,” instead of utilizing Guyana’s resources towards mitigating further floods and putting in place the needed infrastructure to protect the country “the administration has been on a spending spree. It has squandered billions on world cup cricket, the Caribbean Festival of the Arts (Carifesta), a five-star hotel and other prestige projects.”
According to Granger the damaging effects and frequent occurrence of flooding in Guyana demand more serious attention from government. He said that the PPP/C administration must comprehend the consequences of climate change like everyone else throughout the world is doing and implement a National Flood Control Master Plan.
The proposed Plan according to the Opposition Leader must protect lives and “be capable of anticipating the monthly cycle of flooding and of notifying citizens early of the onset of extreme weather and the threat of flooding. The Plan must strengthen disaster risk management agencies and maintain sea defence and flood protection infrastructure.”
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