Posted on Friday 2 April 2010 – 10:43
By Owen Miyanza, Africanews, Lusaka – Zambia
Many houses in the capital of Zambia have been submerged due to the heavy rains being experienced compounded with poor drainage system. Lusaka is said to be built on top of a rock making it difficult for water to sink.
(Click HERE for video of the floods)
The townships are the most affected, the situation is worse in Kuku township commonly known as Blue Water Site located just one and half kilometers from the central district.
In some houses property has been damaged as residents fled their homes following the rising water levels. Some pit latrine toilets have been submerged threatening a health hazard situation because the water is contaminated with human excretion.. There have been cases of cholera in the townships.
Thieves are taking advantage of the situation by stealing from the vacated houses while cases of murder have also been recorded. Movements in the area is another hassle, gumboots is the convenient type of shoe.
The Disaster Management Unit has identified a site on the north of the city where a thousand plus floods victims have so far been relocated. The Zambia Army has erected some tents where the floods victims are accommodated. Some facilities such as water, mobile toilets have been brought to the site.The Zambia Red Cross has set up a base to provide health care while a pre-school has been opened. The flood victims are happy with the new homes but their worry is where to since this is temporal. It may not be possible for many to go back to their houses and they are appealing to government to find a conducive permanent place.Some sections of the society are calling on government to declare the situation as a national disaster.The Local Authority says many affected places are settlements that were not planed for residential. Some people just occupied the area with the local authority approval. So far government is yet to come up with a lasting solution to the poor drainage system in the Lusaka.