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Saturday, December 4, 2021

Heavy storm renders 300 homeless in Kono

By Mohamed Massaquoi in Kono

Some 300 residents have been rendered homeless after heavy storm unroofed over 50 houses in three chiefdoms in Kono district, eastern province last Wednesday.

Kono is a diamondiferous district and most of its forests have been destroyed as a result of mining activities.

According to the Section Chief of Wordu town in Sandor chiefdom, Pa Fasuluku Tamba Karkamoe, eight houses were unroofed at Wordu town including a newly constructed church and the Saint Philip primary school. Another 25 dwelling houses were destroyed in a town called Koikuma, while over 30 houses suffered similar fate in Yomondu, thus leaving hundreds of residents homeless, he explained.

Chief Karkamoe told journalists that people whose houses were destroyed by the heavy storm had no alternative but to hibernate in unfinished houses with no doors and windows to protect them from rain and the cold wind at night.

“There is nothing I could do at the moment to salvage this ugly situation currently facing my people because things are also very tough for me,” Chief Karkamoe lamented, adding that he had twice brought the development to the attention of their Councilor in Ward 71, Ernest Wortey, but no response has been forthcoming. “This is not the first time we have faced such a disaster in Sandor chiefdom and the local authorities are doing nothing to assuage the people’s sufferings.”

Chief Karkamoe noted that their town is not a mining area and that his people are mostly engaged in small farming in rice, groundnut, cacao and coffee for their sustenance. He alleged that farmers in the community are not receiving any support from the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Food Security which, according to him, withdrew a tractor given to them for agricultural purposes “simply because we cannot meet the high rental or purchase demands by the ministry”.

Eighty-two year old Madam Sia Sama, a victim of the storm disaster, told Concord Times that she was alone inside the house when the roof was blown-off by the dreaded storm.

“I can’t prevent my roof from being blown-off because of my age,” she said, pointing out that the house was built by her deceased husband for the family so many years ago. Her children, she lamented, are presently unemployed and therefore could not raise the required funds to repair the damage.

Previous articleUS$7m cash transfer for poorest communities By Ibrahim Tarawallie Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Dr. Kaifala Marah, yesterday disclosed that an agreement with the World Bank will make available direct cash transfers to poorest communities in four districts, totaling US$7million. Briefing newsmen on the outcome of the recently concluded spring meetings in Washington D.C. with the management and staff of the Bank, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and the African Development Bank, Dr. Marah said that the Social Safety Nets grants will be managed by the National Commission for Social Action (NaCSA) in Bombali and Kono districts, among others, adding, “About 10,000 people will benefit from this agreement.” He maintained that during meetings with the World Bank, they confirmed the appropriateness of six (6) areas, including capacity building for the Ministry of Transport and Aviation, public transportation (Ferries and water buses), and technical support to the National Commission for Privatization (NCP), and the Bank’s assured support through ongoing and planned operations. According to the Finance Minister, the Bank agreed to provide the necessary funding for the provision of new ferries to ensure that the problem of transportation across Lungi become a thing of the past. Dr. Marah explained that during a meeting with the IMF, the issue of sovereign credit rating was thoroughly discussed and that the country is engaging international rating agencies to conduct a sovereign rating to enable it borrow from international capital markets at lower costs. “To ensure the country is rated, the Standard Chartered Bank has been contacted to provide the necessary advises,” he said. “The first review of the Extended Credit Facility Programme supported by the IMF shows that all quantitative performance criteria for end of December 2013 were met and all structural benchmarks programmed for end-December were observed by the government.” He opined that there is a stable macroeconomic environment characterized by double digit economic growth, single digit inflation, low interest rates, stable exchange rates and improved revenue performance, as well as trade surplus, due to high exports and sustainable external debt. He ended up by stating that the British Department for International Development (DFID) is generally pleased with the country’s progress in fiscal consolidation and macroeconomic stabilization, the commitment to good governance, as well as new focus on inclusive growth.
Next articlePeace returns to Gbanti Kamaranka chiefdom

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