15 August 2012

South Sudan: Unity State Citizens Face Worsening Flooding

Photo: UN Photo/Tim McKulka
Displaced children fetch water using a submerged hand pump following flooding in the villages caused by extremely heavy rains.(file photo).

Bentiu — Bentiu town, the Unity state capital, is under threat as heavy rains continue to fall, as its citizens flee for higher ground.

On Wednesday night in rains which began at 4.00pm and continued until midnight, more than 500 homes were flooded and thousands of people are now waiting to flee the area.

Residents claim that 600 more homes are currently at risk. Daresalam village is the worst hit area along with Kalibalek, Biemrouk, Dere and Kordapdap.

On Wednesday Sudan Tribune witnessed a number of people fleeing the area, wading through 50cm of water to settle along the roads. Many are without food or clean drinking water and expressing concern about the threat of malaria and water-borne diseases.

Nyapini Pech abandoned her house with her five children and was seated on the road. She called on the South Sudan government for assistance, saying that without it, "there is no way out".

Koang Dak Teny whose house is now submerged, called upon the government to dig drainage channels.

John Puot Keah director for the state ministry of social development said they mobilised staff on Wednesday who will establish what relief is needed within Benitu and will call on non-governmental organisations to assist in the distribution of food aid.

There are plans to dig a drainage canal, according to Keah.

Flooding since June has displaced thousands of people throughout South Sudan. The flooding will not only displace people but will destroy vital crops.

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