By Tina S. Mehnpaine
The United Wisdom Community located on Sinkor, Monrovia, on Saturday, October 3, 2020, was a scene of jubilation and relief when the Presidential Disaster Response Task-Force (PDRT) through the Disaster Management Agency (NDMA) provided a check of $198,500.00, Liberian dollars for people whose relatives were killed and homes damaged by the fence that fell in that community.
It can be recalled in early June 2020, a fence fell and killed five persons and damaged over six houses.
PDRT has also provided 22 single-size mattresses, 20 gallons of vegetable oil, and 12 packs of nails to the disaster victims.
Varney A. Sirleaf, Minister of Internal Affairs and Board Chairman of the PDRT, said disaster is increasing throughout the country and therefore President George Weah decided to form a task-force to assist victims to give them a fresh start.
“Our President formed this emergency disaster management team under his wing because of his love for his people,” he said.
“When you are leaving your room, cut off the candles and mosquito coils, and if there is electricity, please make sure to get the proper connection from the Liberia Electricity Corporation,” Minister Sirleaf said.
He further warned resident to stop building houses on waterway, adding that “If you build on the waterway rainy season you will be calling people to help you, because the water will take total control of the entire building.
Henry O. Williams, NDMA Director, said the alarming disaster incidents across the country have drawn the attention of the President.
According to him, the well-being of disaster victims is a major priority of President Weah and, as such, he has instructed them to give US$1,000 to each family of those whose relatives died and homes destroyed to pay one year rent US$290 to each family of those whose properties were damaged but did not lose a relative.
The NDMA Director said fire is the leading disaster occurrence in high frequency in Monrovia. “Almost every day fire is burning houses, leaving people desolate and destroying everything which is so frustrating,” he expressed.
He said though flooding is another one, it is not as tense as fire. For flooding, you can sometime pick your mattress, take one or two documents and carry it, but with fire, it destroys everything in a twinkling of an eye,” said Williams.
Meanwhile, the NDMA has also donated 30 bundles of zinc to the St. Matthew Lutheran High School to aid in the reconstruction of the school building that got burned a few days ago.
The school was seen burned down totally sometimes ago and the administration has attributed it to an arson attack that no one has been arrested in connection to.
In another development, the National Disaster Management Agency (NDMA) recently handed-over 20 bundles zinc, 20 packs of nails, 30 bags of rice and 30 gallons of vegetable oil to business women in Duazon, Margibi County.
The items are intended for the rebuilding of the market hall that was recently gutted by an uncontrollable fire.
Presenting the items, NDMA Director, Henry O. Williams, said “These items were made possible by President George Weah who wishes to always demonstrate his steadfast love for the Liberian people, especially business women.”
He said though the items are small in quantity, they can somewhat serve as “Remedy for the market women to recover.”
Henry added that when it comes to disaster in Liberia, the disaster task force has guaranteed priority areas like flood, wind, storm erosion, and fire, which according to him are the major causes of disaster in the country.
Receiving the donation, Younie Weng, Market Superintendent, said the items donated have brought relief to the market women.
She said while the impact of the incident is still felt by the women, they, however, have a reason to smile because of the President’s intervention.
Younie said: “It was indeed a scene of grief when we saw the market building on fire.” She thanked NDMA for the immediate response, stating that the donation is in good faith.
Also speaking, Irene Gibson said since the incident she has been traumatized up to present as all her goods were consumed by the fire. “All my goods left in the fire along with my money.”