eThekwini Disaster Management Unit passes the buck while victims of floods suffer

Issued by Cllr Zandile Mkhize – DA eThekwini Councillor
03 Jul 2019 in Press Statements

Note to Editors: Find attached a soundbite in isiZulu from DA eThekwini Councillor, Zandile Mkhize

The Democratic Alliance in eThekwini is enraged at the failure by the city Disaster Management Unit to address the deteriorating conditions at the ward 23 flood transit camp, which is threatening the well-being of flood victims currently resident there (see pictures here, here, here and here)

Following a DA oversight at the transit camp last week on Friday, we wrote to the Head of Disaster Management, Vincent Ngubane, requesting a meeting to discuss the unsatisfactory performance of his department in attending to the needs of residents displaced by the April 2019 floods. Ngubane referred the matter to the acting eThekwini Mayor and Chair of the Disaster Management Committee, Cllr Fawzia Peer, who is yet to respond.

The transit camp houses over 20 families. The state of these shelters is inhumane and a violation of the most basic of human rights. The tent is porous exposing occupants to the daunting elements of the winter weather. There are no proper ablution facilities, nor beds creating inhospitable living conditions. The conditions not only create uncomfortable living conditions but are conducive for the transfer of bacteria and other associated diseases.

The Democratic Alliance in eThekwini is calling on the Disaster Management Unit to:

  • Develop and communicate future plans to assist the victims;
  • Provide a humane and safe shelter
  • Provide adequate food and health care
  • Install proper bath and changing chambers that will create a private space for occupants

The insensitive ANC has really turned its back on people. It is unacceptable that the people of eThekwini have to live under such inhumane conditions. The Disaster management unit run by the ANC led administration has like a number of other units, failed the residents of this eThekwini.

Where we govern the Democratic Alliance has a working relationship with the weather services sector to ensure that proactive plans are in place to limit the amount of possible damage and casualties. This includes ensuring that storm water drains are well maintained, to negate the possibilities of seeping caused by water rising through cracks and the constant maintenance of old infrastructure, and where needed replacing poorly built infrastructure. Where natural disasters like floods are imminent, we have invested in staffing personal ready to the task.

The DA will continue to fight for a just society that is both inclusive and fair.