MPs blocking relocation of disaster victims

By Staff Reporter

THE principal administration officer in the Civil Protection Unit (CPU) Lameck Betera said they are facing resistance from parliamentarians when it comes to relocating disaster families for the fear of losing votes.

CPU was appearing before the Portfolio Committee on Environment, Water, Tourism and Hospitality Industry to submit oral evidence on their operations.

“In terms of relocation, one challenge comes from you (MPs), you don’t want people to move from your constituencies because some people will not vote for you, that is one challenge we also encounter in the relocation process, we will not be speaking one language”, Betera told the committee.

Speaking at the same occasion, CPU deputy director Sibusisiwe Ndhlovu said according to statistics they have collected to date, a total of 192 people have died, 3558 houses partially damaged, 5656 people left homeless and the number of households left homeless all together were 773 with 43 of them being child headed.

CPU director Nathan Nkomo told the committee that they were in need of US$3.8milion for the 317 Tsholotsho families that have accepted to be relocated.

Khupe-tsholotsho
Honourable Thokozani Khupe visiting some of the floods affected areas in Tsholotsho a few months ago

“More importantly when we then move them to a new location, we are required by the current framework to build back better, it’s no longer pole and dagga house now we now want to show the people that there is an incentive to move them to a higher ground, remember most the houses in Tsholotsho were pole and dagga” Nkomo revealed.

Nkomo added that US$12 000 was going to be used to build a 3 roomed house, granary, round kitchen and toilet for the Tsholotsho flood victims.

The committee contested the figures saying the amount was too high for a rural homestead however the CPU director said cement was going to be used for brick moulding.

Nkomo urged treasury to release its US$200 000 budget allocation saying the organisation was heavily relying on donor funds mainly from the Chinese and the Algerians.

Many people were left homeless early this year when Cyclone Dineo floods hit Matabeleland and some parts of the Midlands province.

 

 

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