By WALLACE KIALA
PROVINCIAL disaster centre assessment teams in Oro province are closely monitoring flood-prone communities as heavy rains are likely to continue into the second week in most parts of the province.
The provincial disaster coordinator Albert Bogembo said yesterday that with the high rainfall and swelling rivers experienced in the past week, more severe flooding like those experienced earlier this month was expected.
“We are closely monitoring rain activity and the river water levels at Girua, Kumusi and Eroro,” Mr Bogembo said.
Teams have been advising villagers along the rivers to take appropriate measures like moving further inland from the likely paths of floods when they burst the river banks.
He said two temporary stone tanks put up to support the partly collapsed Girua bridge were gradually being pushed down stream by the river.
“Providing a long-lasting passageway through these rivers at the various bridges should be the Government’s priority in the long term and will also cut high costs of maintenance and repair. The socio-economic well-being of the people is dependent on better bridges and infrastructure.”
He said the provincial government should push for Works Department to do a follow-up on carrying out an immediate extensive survey and engineering so that more permanent bridges to withstand bad weather were built.
Mr Bogembo also asked what happened to the K87 million provided by the Australian government following to the devastation caused by Cyclone Guba in 2007.
“How, where and how much of it was implemented is a question mark and it must be investigated when the province continues to face infrastructural and developmental setbacks,” Mr Bogembo said.
He said the money provided by the Australian government was allocated for the constriction of four bridges that were affected during the 2007 devastation.
Mr Bogembo could not comment further on the progress of relief efforts by the Oro Province Restoration Authority.