18 September 2012

Liberia: Cholera Threat

Health hazards caused by the continuous dumping of garbage and other solid waste in the Whein Town community by the Monrovia City Corporation (MCC) has left two persons dead and

several others sick, according to Wade Julius, co-chair of the Whein Town community.

"They (MCC) continue to bring more sickness to our community. There is no drinking water; our people are dying on a daily basis. We are dying slowly; if you even look at the other house right there, a lady died there recently because of cholera. Another lady also died recently from the same situation," she told this paper Monday.

Situated away the commercial district of Red-Light, Whein Town has been a dumpsite for Monrovia's garbage and solid waste for years, exposing residents to health hazards.

Amid persistent complaints and resistance from the residents, trucks continuously dump their cargo of garbage daily in the community, polluting the entire environment.

Wade Julius says the heap of garbage which overlook the entire area like a mountain, represents "sickness and death" to them. "We voted for President (Ellen Johnson Sirleaf) to rescue us from this problem and now we are in need of her to attend to us."

Flomo Zobah who lives a few meters away from the dumpsite, claimed that many children and adults have contacted malaria, typhoid and cholera due to the continuous disposal of filth in their environment.

"This dump site is embarrassing us here. We don't have safe drinking water and the mosquitoes continue to kill our children with malaria. You can see for yourself a smell of the dumpsite makes you sick immediately.

"The government should at least try to address this issue by connecting us to a pipe-borne water facility. They should assist us with mosquito nets so that our children can live in peace because we cannot force the government to relocate this dumpsite from here. We don't have that power.

We are only appealing to them to assist us like humans too," he said.

Another resident, Theresa Gbellay said as a result of the situation, they are unable to sleep at night due to pollution.

"We can't sleep at night. We can't eat well because of the flies, which pose threat to our health on a daily basis. Sicknesses like typhoid, malaria and cholera often threaten our lives here. The government should really do something about this situation so that we too can live a healthy life. At least if they can bring us mosquito nets, that would be fine for now," said Gbellay, a businesswoman.

When contacted, the communication director of MCC, Mr. Moses Brown admitted that residents have been complaining to them about the pollution.

But, he said MCC has been spraying the area on a weekly basis to kill the germs that cause the pollution.

Mr. Brown told this paper that MCC once met with community dwellers and the Representative of the area, Henry Fahnbulleh, to amicably resolve the problem.

Copyright © 2012 New Democrat. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 2,000 reports a day from more than 130 news organizations and over 200 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.