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Prime Minister, Brigadier (Ret’d) Mark Phillips, and a high-level team of Government Ministers were Wednesday afternoon updated on the preliminary findings of a Detailed Damage Sectoral Assessment on the recent flooding across the country.
The assessment is being conducted by the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA) in collaboration with Guyana’s Civil Defence Commission (CDC).
During a meeting at the Prime Minister’s Office, the Government officials were informed about the preliminary finding by Executive Director of CDEMA, Elizabeth Riley.
The findings indicated the floods were severe. The team found that all impacted areas experienced damages to crops and livestock. They also found that livelihoods have been disrupted and that the damages have created a decrease in supply, which have substantially increased market prices.
Prime Minister Phillips said that the overall report, which will be submitted to the Government, will identify the impact of the floods on various sectors and will be a guide in the Government’s recovery process.
“What it will help us to do is to start the recovery process in an informed manner, the contents in the report will aid us in determining the priority projects. What will happen now is that they will put together a detailed report that will be submitted to the Government and from there we will determine our next steps”.
Among the recommendations are a comprehensive plan for recovery, including the relocation of farms in some areas, income support for farmers, the procurement of planting materials and the provision of food supplies to affected persons.
Among the key findings in the social sector were the displacement of individuals and families across communities and the fact that many children were unable to attend school as a result of the disaster.
The CDEMA Executive Director, who arrived in the country this morning, said that the team conducted a comprehensive analysis and examined a range of issues.
“We looked at water and sanitation issues …we also discussed impacts to housing and the potential steps that could be taken to address this, as well as infrastructure and sheltering arrangements for persons who have been displaced”.
Additionally, Riley praised the CDC for its efficiency in coordinating an effective response to the disaster.
“We looked at the extent of which the coordination was being effected within the sectors and I think that one of the very good findings is that the Civil Defence Commission, under the leadership of Colonel Craig, has done an excellent job in the overall coordination thus far”.
To date, the CDC has coordinated and distributed over 34, 000 food hampers and over 26,000 sanitation hampers across the country.
According to information from the CDC, since May 18 there have been reports of persons affected by flooding. Those reports have now totalled over 51,000 households in more than 300 communities across all 10 administrative regions of the country.
Also present during this afternoon’s meeting, were Senior Minister within the Office of the President with responsibility for Finance, Dr Ashni Singh, Minister of Public Works, Juan Edghill, Minister of Natural Resources, the Honourable Vickram Bharrat, Minister of Agriculture, Zulfikar Mustapha, Minister of Health, Dr Frank Anthony and Director General of the CDC Lieutenant Colonel Kester Craig.