At least 100 residents of Old Kru town in Harper, Maryland County, southeast Liberia, have been left homeless after two days of heavy downpour in the coasted county.
The victims are currently seeking refuge with families, friends, and neighbors, while others took their belongings and children to churches and public buildings in the city. Floods swept several homes, leaving personal belongings floating.
Speaking in an interview with this paper on Tuesday, 5th June in Harper, after the rain subsided, Naomi Dee, who had resided in the community for over five years, says though they are aware that every year floods will cause damage, residents are helpless because financial difficulty.
A single mother of five children, she appeals to national government, including the Liberia National Red Cross Society to come to their aid. “I packed all my things in the ceiling since I have nowhere to keep them while my children and I are sleeping in this Redeemed Church, and I want to appreciate the church for allowing us to be here until we find place”, she laments.
Since the incident, the Red Cross and the County Disaster Committee are is yet to speak on the issue.Last year, similar flooding occurred in the same community, and the county authority headed by Madam Betsy Kuoh Toe, provided a parcel of land to the affected residents, but they deliberately refused to relocate.
The residents, many of whom earn their living through fishing, explain that relocating to another environment far from their fish driers and canoe anchoring points could make life more difficult for them.
It may be recalled that former President Ellen Johnson presented building materials (zinc, nails) and money through former Acting Superintendent Nathaniel Toe, Jr. and land was provided but the flood victims again refused to relocate.
Old Kru town community, which is situated on the outskirts of the Atlantic Ocean, shares boundary with North Barti Moore along Central Harper to Cape Palmas.
Community chairman Samuel Toby, describes the current situation as totally uncontrollable.
“The situation is difficult; I am also affected because water is in my house. We are just calling on the local government; I understand there is a committee for disaster; I want them to come to our rescue. This rain will still fall as you are seeing the weather is getting dark again my brother”, he notes in an interview.
Chairman Toby explains that residents are planning to meet with Superintendent George Prowd for intervention, and to join them in appealing to national government and partners for help.
By George K. Momo/ Maryland-Editing by Jonathan Browne