Popo Beach Residents Fear Displacement

Early storms threaten coastal dwellings

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It would normally take until July or August before the heavy rains begin to wreak havoc on communities, both coastal and inland. But this year, the rainy season has begun with much intensity, as early storms driven by high speed winds join the crashing waves to threaten the survival of coastal communities.

Fisherman Patrick Teah, a resident of Popo Beach on Bushrod Island in New Kru Town, is afraid that he may lose his zinc home if nothing is done to check the angry waves of the Atlantic Ocean. Teah told the Daily Observer in an interview that while the rainy season is yet to come, the current wave of the ocean is a cause for concern.

“Already the angry wave is forcing us to move somewhere,” he said. “I am afraid that by the end of the month of May, many of us will not have somewhere to stay.”

He said the waves, unchecked for many years, have gained exceptional power, while efforts to prevent water from overflowing to their rooms have always failed.

The current waves are sweeping from Lagoon, Colonel West and Popo Beach communities and residents said no one is exempt from the pending danger.

“You see D. Twe High School is going slowly,” Teah said, “and so will we.”

A man, who said he was religious, said “When God made the earth, He told us to take care of it but we, in Liberia, seem to have forgotten that part in the Bible,” which was his reaction following the recent media attention on the threat that D. Twe High School is currently facing, which has not seen any official response.

Popo Beach on Bushrod Island in New Kru Town

Other residents interviewed said the Liberian government must get serious with a coastal defense of D. Twe High School so that Redemption Hospital can also be saved, with its huge investment in Ebola History Study.

“Saving D. Twe means saving Redemption Hospital and it must not end there. Colonel West and Popo Beach as well need help because they are next to the Freeport of Monrovia,” a resident said.

The Daily Observer learned that a coastal defense for D. Twe High School will shift the burden on Colonel West, Popo Beach and eventually the Freeport of Monrovia.

“We don’t know what anyone will do to help bring this situation under control,” Teah said, “but for now I am looking for a place to move before the end of the month.”

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