RUBAVU - The Governor Western Province Penelope Kantarama has instructed mayors of Nyabihu and Rubavu Districts to find land where flood victims could be settled permanently.
Local leaders fear if the flood victims are left in a congested camp, without safe water and latrines, an epidemic might break out.
Recent floods that hit the Western Province displaced hundreds, killed 15 people and destroyed property worth millions.
“We have so far taken a good step in solving some of the problems faced by thousands of people from over 1,000 houses which were destroyed following the heavy rains in the two districts. This should however be every one’s responsibility. Mayors should try their best to identify land where we shall resettle these people.” Kantarama said.
She was addressing a recent meeting with district leaders, and Red Cross officials at Rubavu district offices. The meeting was called to map-out strategies of helping flood victims.
A committee to fast track the resettlement of the victims in permanent homes has since been formed.
The move to resettle the internally displaced people comes at a time 30 people including 20 children and 10 adults are currently hit by constant vomiting and diarrhoea.
Dr. Tharcisse Munga the head of Gisenyi Hospital said they are receiving treatment. “Our hospital is working closely with the Ministry of Health to provide medical support to the victims and the current tests indicate that there isn’t any outbreak of a serious disease like cholera.”
Victims say that the possible course of the constant vomiting and diarrhea was connected to lack pit latrine and clean water.
“We ask the government to support us by providing more foodstuffs. We are getting sick due to poor hygiene coursed by insufficient pit latrines and lack of clean water.
The tents are also too small. One tent can not provide shelter for a families of more that 8 people.” said Claude Harerimana one of the victims.
Mean while, Nyamasheke district has donated 10 tonnes of maize to the victims who are currently in Bigogwe sector of Nyabihu district, this aid is estimated to feed over 200 families in a period of one month.
The aid was donated through the Catholic Church in Nyamasheke Parish, ADPR church, Nyamasheke Rural Development Bank, contributions from various secondary schools and Nyamasheke district authority.
Experts have warned that the East African region could face torrential rains in the coming months.