Central African Republic: Bangui - Flooded Families Seek Drier Land Due to Climate Crisis

By Najwa Mekki

Life is a daily struggle for nearly 200 families who live on the banks of the Ubangi River in Bangui, the capital of the Central African Republic (CAR). Rising water levels forced them - not for the first time - to seek drier land on the other side of the river, leaving them with no homes, no jobs and hardly any prospects.

"The situation is catastrophic," says Nzegueguy, adviser to the community leader/neighbourhood committee leader. "Look around you. Look where we live."

Where they live is a small stretch of land in a sand-and-gravel quarry, just a 10-minute drive from the city centre. Their homes are pieces of tarp held together by sticks, which crumble when it's windy and get washed away when it rains. There are no schools, no toilets, no running water.

Toddlers - and there are many of them - run around barefoot, even as large trucks inch their way along the narrow dirt road. Heavily pregnant mothers have not had a single prenatal visit and do not know where they will deliver.

The families first came to this side of the Ubangi River following floods in 2019. When the water receded, the families went back. But seven months ago, new floods made them flee again, and this time they have no plans to return.

"The land there is not good," says a community member. "Every time it rains our possessions are swept away."

Read the full story on UN OCHA

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