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FDC Speaks out on Government plan to evacuate people living in disaster prone areas

BY ZALIMON BASIGHALHA (GOODLUCK)

The Kasese District Forum for Democratic Change –FDC Chairperson has finally responded to the Government’s plan to evacuate the people living in risky mountain slopes to safer areas.

On Tuesday while addressing Journalists at the Uganda Media Centre in Kampala, the Minister for ICT and National Guidance, Dr. Chris Baryomunsi said government will use persuasion to have people in risky areas relocated to safer places within their respective regions.

This followed the recent disasters in Rwenzori, Bugisu and Sebei regions which have claimed several lives.

Now, addressing the press in his office in Kasese town on Wednesday, Saulo Maate, the Kasese district FDC Chairperson argued that no need for the government of Uganda to persuade residents who live in risky areas but only to give them assurance of where they can be relocated.

The FDC Chairperson said that as a party in Kasese where mudslides claimed several lives in one day, they are concerned about the mechanism which the government is intending to use while evacuating the victims.

Maate said he wonders why government has failed to relocate the Internally Displaced People camped at Muhokya who were directly affected during the May 10, 2020 floods when the main rivers streaming from Rwenzori Mountains burst their banks to safer area.

He also requested the office of the District Chairperson and the entire District Disaster Management Committee to immediately release and distribute all the relief items that were donated by the Office of the Prime Minister.

Last week, Mr. Eliphaz Muhindi Bukombi, the Kasese district L.C V Chairperson confirmed to the press that the Office of the Prime Minister has donated relief items to the September 07, 2022 Kasika Mudslides victims.  

Muhindi confirmed that the district received an assortment of relief items including 10,000 kgs of maize flour, 5,000kgs of beans and 200 refugee tents.  He however said that the district through the Disaster Management Committee would supply the relief items to the victims in phases.

However, the above statement seemed not to have gone well with the FDC Chairperson. He appealed to the office of the district chairperson and the disaster committee to genuinely distribute the said relief to the victims and not in phases since it is meant to support the still traumatized mudslide victims.

In a telephone interview with rwenzoridaily.com, Emmy Kitsama, the Rukoki Sub-county L.C III chairperson confirmed that the District Disaster Management Committee has started distributing the relief items to the victims.

According to him, each household was given 50 kgs of maize flour and 25 kgs of beans and a total of 80 household have so far received the relief.

Kitsama, who said that they did not receive refugee tents, however reported that the disaster committee members assured them that there are still other relief items in the district stores which are part of the donation from the Office of the Primier.

It is from this background that the FDC Chairperson said he is much worried about the safety of the relief items at the stores arguing that they might be tempered with by what he described as corrupt officials.

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