Mozambique: Government Lacks Money to Pay Allowances to Victims of Dump Collapse

Maputo — The Mozambican government is working with partners in order to mobilize financial resources to pay overdue allowances to 120 households who were victims of the collapse of the enormous rubbish dump at Hulene, on the outskirts of Maputo city, according to the Minister of Land and Environment, Ivete Maibasse.

The disaster happened on 19 February 2018 and resulted in the death of 17 people. The dump had been allowed to grow into a monster which towered over the houses built in its shadow. Torrential rains precipitated the collapse, which swept away homes and the people living in them.

The 120 households have not received their allowances for six months. In all, 260 families were removed from the vicinity of the Hulene dump.

As a way out, while houses are being built for the resettlement, the government decided to give each family 30,000 Meticais (4,600 US dollars, at the current exchange rate) per quarter to rent a house.

These are families who have not yet been included in the handing over of houses built in the resettlement zone for their removal from the perimeter of the dump.

According to Maibasse, speaking on Wednesday at the launch of the "Electronic Platform for Land Conflict Management', actions are under way to pay the allowances for the last quarter of last year and the first quarter of this year.

"The government is mobilizing resources for the payment of the families' allowances', the minister said. "This is a process that has been going on since 2018, and there is an effort by the government to mobilize resources because this is our commitment as a government to guarantee the continuity of the families' allowances until they have their houses duly completed'.

"We have told the families that we are mobilizing resources. The families are always informed both by the government and also by the Maputo Municipal Council, which is an integral part of this process', she added.

The Mayor of Maputo, Rasaque Manhique, recently sworn into office, stressed that the municipality will continue to work with the Ministry to mobilize resources.

"The important thing is to find a solution and we understand from the minister's words that this responsibility has not been thrown away', Manhique added. "What is needed at the moment is resources, which must be organized, because the families are really suffering, but we must all work together to find a solution'.

Last September, the government only handed over 54 houses to the victims of the dump collapse, in the Possulane neighbourhood, in Maputo Province, outside of the city.

The house construction project is budgeted at 620 million meticais (around 9.7 million dollars).

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