The Management of the National Commission for Democracy (NCD) has woken up to the reality that the City of Freetown has been hard hit by a massive disaster caused by flooding and landslides on account of the heavy down pour of rain that started in the early hours of Monday, August 14, 2017.Going by report reaching the Commission, the affected communities include Regent, Kamayama, Kanigo, Pentagon in Lumley and other communities in the seafront areas. With this unprecedented disaster that has rocked the Capital City, it is estimated that more than two hundred lives have been wasted with a whole community submerged in the process.
With this disaster that has reached unprecedented magnitude, the Management of NCD wishes to extend its sincere condolence to affected families and communities for the many lives that have been lost whilst at the same time calling on all agencies concerned both government and NGOs to come to the rescue of victims and affected communities to ameliorate their existing plight.
However, it is the strong conviction of the Management of NCD that such a disaster could have been averted if only the necessary precautionary measures were adhered to by all concerned.
As it stands, such a disaster was only waiting to happen with the massive deforestation that has taken place, the reckless abandon with which communities are established and the unprofessional manner in which houses are constructed.
It could be recalled that Sierra Leone has been described as one among the three most disaster prone nations in the World, but despite such knowledge, we have continued to treat the issue with kids glove even in the face of the stark reality with the continued experience of one kind of disaster or the other.
What the current crisis is saying to us is that we must go beyond the mere rhetoric of appealing and take the necessary action to avoid the future occurrence of such a disaster.
The Government and the people of this nation should endeavor to adhere to the findings of expert in terms of areas that have been described as disaster prone areas for immediate evacuation and not wait until more lives are lost to flooding, landslides, heavy winds and related causes consequent upon the climate change trajectory with Sierra Leone as a victim of this ugly trend.
The Management of NCD is using this medium to remind the populace of this nation that the following communities have been identified as disaster prone communities and therefore, there is need for urgent action to be taken in these communities to avoid further disaster. These communities include: Kroo Bay, White Man’s Bay, Susan’s Bay, Mabella, Congo Town, Kanikay, Madina, Mafenbe and so on.
These are all bay areas in the Western Area. For the inland and the mountains in the Western Area, the list is also long with the need for a serious rethink on how to handle the current situation and avert future occurrences.
It is the strong conviction of the Management of NCD that decisive actions should be taken now to avoid the firefighting syndrome that has characterized past interventions in the prevention and mitigation of disasters in Sierra Leone.
Enough is enough as we cannot afford to lose more lives to either natural or manmade disaster with the need for all to take responsibility, do the right thing and allow the law to take its course.
Long Live the People of Sierra Leone!
Long Live the Rule of Law!
Long Live a Disaster Free Nation!
All Press and Media Houses
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Offices of National Security (ONS)
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
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Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces (RSLAF)
All Civil Society Organizations (CSOs)
DATE: MONDAY, AUGUST 14, 2017