President Ernest Koroma visits disaster site to mourn with victims’ families

Published on August 9, 2010 by Cocorioko News   ·   No Comments

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By Joseph Kamanda :

His Excellency the President, Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma,  today  visited the landslide disaster site at Owen Street in Freetown, where two houses collapsed due to  a heavy downpour of rain last night.

Thirteen people were killed in the disaster and many more injured.

According to a victim, nine of his children,  six of whom were his biological children and three adopted ones, died during the accident.
He lamented that he is now left with no child and asked for God’s intervention during these turbulent times.

President Koroma expressed his heartfelt sympathy to the bereaved families and prayed that God will grant eternal peace and mercy to the departed souls.
The President instructed the Ministry of Health and Sanitation to take up the responsibilities of the dead and wounded.

Present at the disaster scene were the Deputy Minister of Health and Sanitation, the Mayor of Freetown Municipality and other government dignitaries.

HERE IS A REPORT ON THE DISASTER :

Sixteen dead in S.Leone mudslide: police
(AFP)

FREETOWN — Sixteen people were killed in a mudslide
that swept away their homes in Sierra Leone’s capital
Freetown on Monday following torrential rains, police
said.

Witnesses said the mudslide occurred at around 4:00 am,
causing the houses built on the slope of a hill to
collapse on top of each other after torrential rains on
Sunday which blocked roads throughout the city.
Huge piles of debris littered the hill several hours
later, with household furniture scattered in the mud,
an AFP correspondent said.

Police spokesman Superintendent Ibrahim Samura told AFP
that “16 people died as a result of the mudslide…. We
had to cordon off the area as it is feared that other
houses are showing signs of collapsing.”

A nurse at the capital’s Connaught Hospital said
another five people were in a critical condition.
Weeping relatives in the predominantly Muslim community
where the disaster occurred tossed themselves to the
ground shouting in grief.

One woman, whose only daughter was among the dead said,
“this is terrible. How could such a death be explained.
Tell me.”
Mudslides are common in Sierra Leone in August and
September when the rainy season reaches its peak.

Officials from the lands ministry have recently warned
residents not to build houses on hilltops.

Seven people died in a mudslide in the capital in
August 2009.

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