EDITORIAL: Let's take precautionary measures against heavy rains

LAST weekend’s heavy downpour left several people dead and property worth millions destroyed across the country. Officials blame lightening for the deaths.

LAST weekend’s heavy downpour left several people dead and property worth millions destroyed across the country. Officials blame lightening for the deaths.

In the past, many people who lived in high risk disaster zones perished after being swept away by floods.

As we brace for more heavy rains in the coming days, we should take precautionary measures to avert loss of life and property. Those living in high risk areas should immediately evacuate to safer areas. 

Government has in the past rolled out a programme to relocate people living in high risk areas but some have stubbornly stayed in these areas.

Although many of the people who live in high risk areas are low income earners who may not afford to put up new housing units in safer places, they should embrace the free government relocation plan.

Concerned authorities should ensure that all high risk areas are cleared of any human settlement.

Local leaders should play a key role in sensitising people to vacate high risk areas and urgent measures should be taken against those who insist on staying.

Meanwhile, the heavy rains can be used to address the current water shortage, especially in homes, through harvesting rain water.

The Ministry of Agriculture and the Meteorology department should also advise farmers on how to respond to the rains. When should they start cultivating or planting? They need extension services to avoid planting prematurely only to register losses shortly after.

Farmers need guidance on what to do, considering the unpredictable weather patterns that seem to be the norm lately.

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