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Landslide victims cry for relocation

By Paul Watala

Added 17th December 2019 05:45 PM

The relatives to the landslide victims that were buried in the recent landslides recently appealed to the minister for disaster preparedness to come to their rescue.

Landslide victims cry for relocation

Over 140 families that live in the landslide prone areas of Bududa have appealed to the Government to speed up the relocation before landslides sweep them. File photo

The relatives to the landslide victims that were buried in the recent landslides recently appealed to the minister for disaster preparedness to come to their rescue.

The over 140 families that live in the landslide-prone areas of Bududa have appealed to the Government to speed up the relocation before landslides sweep them.

The relatives to the landslide victims that were buried in the recent landslides recently appealed to the minister for disaster preparedness and refugees Hilary Onek to come to their rescue.

The families were supposed to be relocated within two weeks, although it is coming to a month since the decision to relocate them was made.

"Bunambutye camp landslide survivors are still worried of their relatives still staying in landslide-prone areas in Bududa and other districts as heavy rains continue to pound the region that they may again be trapped," John Kimono said

"We are worried that our people will soon again be buried by the looming landslides as heavy rains have continued to ravage the region and the crack continues to enlarge," John Masolo former resident in Bukiyi sub-county said.

The number of the bodies that have been recovered from the mudslide in Bududa has now reached 27 and the recovery of more bodies hit a snag when the earth moving equipment broke down. 

Masolo said some of the relatives have fled the villages and followed their relatives into the camp in Bunambutye for fear of being trapped by landslides.

Masolo noted that recent rains caused floods, which ravaged several villages in Bududa, Mbale, Manafwa and Sironko district and left scores homeless.

 "We are suggesting that let families be relocated and they stay in as they do final finishing instead of rushing because landslide has covered some of them," she said.

Disaster preparedness minister Hillary Onek said people in landslide-prone areas would be relocated to Bunambutye resettlement camp in Bulambuli district.

Onek had led a team of officials from OPM and other concerned sister ministries on a fact-finding tour to access the progress of the works under phase two at Bunambutye camp.

Onek, while addressing the officials and journalists at the camp said most of the houses under phase two had been completed.

 "The region is experiencing heavy rains that may cause another deadly landslide hence killing people. We have taken a decision that let the completed houses be occupied immediately in two weeks," Onek said.

"We cannot afford to see our people being buried in the mudslide and yet we have houses that have been completed waiting to be occupied," he added.

Onek also noted that the government has started opening up five hundred acres of land for the families to get involved in farming to fight food insecurity and eradicate poverty in their households.

He said that each family will be given two acres of land in addition to one acre of land that they got earlier; where their houses are sited on to make the number of acres come to three.

"The tractors have started opening up the land and we appeal to the families to take advantage of the rains to plant crops that yield quickly like vegetables. We are looking at setting up the irrigation systems that will provide water during the dry season," Onek said.

Onek said that the government is to construct 900 units with over 100,000 people relocated from landslide-prone areas in the entire district found on the slopes of Mt Elgon.

The relocation of landslide victims started early this year and so far, about 1,000 people have been relocated to the Bunambutye resettlement camp in Bulambuli district.

 

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