The floodwaters that have left residents of Region Nine (Upper Takutu-Upper Essequibo) inundated for sometime has be begun to recede.
Authorities, however, are still monitoring the situation, since the water level can rise again with another heavy downpour.
Director of the Civil Defence Commission (CDC), Lieutenant Colonel Kester Craig, explained to this media group that “if there’s more rainfall, it could come up back again.”
On Sunday, Regional Chairman Brian Allicock said that the water is “going down rapidly”, and the roadways are now visible for vehicle usage.
“We getting access to the villages now by roadways. We could drive…but there is still about 17 inches of water still on the road, but the vehicles are going through… We can get to St. Ignatius by roadway now, we don’t have to use boats anymore,” the Chairman stated.
However, he pointed out that while the water is receding, those almost 60 residents who had to be evacuated from their homes are still not allowed to return, as the situation is still being monitored to ensure that the water will not rise again. He said intense clean-up exercises will have to be undertaken at the flooded houses, and he anticipates that evacuated residents would remain out of their homes for another week and a half.
“When the water fully recedes, you (residents will) have to clean the buildings, disinfect it and all that, to ensure that it’s safe before they can go back [home]. So we have to keep them here at the shelters and provide for them,” the Regional Chairman posited.
He said already there are some cleaning supplies on the ground, and more is expected during this week.
Meanwhile, Several parts of the Deep South Rupununi, such as Karasabai, still remains cut off from Central Lethem.
According to Chairman Allicock, a group of Toshaos travelled into the area via boat, using a different route. He noted that they have not gotten any information from those areas as to whether the residents there are in need of relief items.
Reports reaching this publication state that the Deep South Rupununi’s main access road en-route to Aishalton has been partly washed away. However, vehicles are presently traversing the back road through Karaudanawa to get to Aishalton, so they can access those communities.
The floods in the Deep South have not only affected residents’ homes, but have destroyed their farms as well. The Regional Chairman noted that there are reports of about 20 farms being under about three to five feet of water.
Toshaos have since been tasked with the responsibility of assessing and reporting to the RDC the number of farmlands that have been affected in their respective communities. Allicock noted that a high-level team, including agri-personnel are expected to visit the area soon.
The flooding has resulted from several rivers, particularly the Takutu River, overtopping because of heavy rainfall in the region and over in neighbouring Brazil, which has resulted in overtopping of the Rio Brancho River.