The wakeup call was again brutal this Monday 8 January 2018. Roads, yards and houses were the prey of flood waters. L’Amitié, a village in the district of Rivière du Rempart has always been the prey pf waters as of its topography.
L’Amitié was well equipped 50 years before today insofar as the drainage system was good. Flood was not ravaging the inhabitants. Natural drains were functioning properly. There were less constructions, less houses, less walls, less concrete flooring, less tarmac, and practically no concrete structures blocking the water passage. Today the situation has changed a lot.
Drains have been obstructed by men. Constructions have mushroomed everywhere. Tarmac and concrete pave the floor. And many constructions (buildings) have been erected on the natural drains. Natural drains have been filled by debris and garbage. Constructions have eaten up natural water passage and all these combined makes it difficult for the waters to run down naturally to the rivers and the sea shores.
And above all there is a ‘laisse-allez’ in terms of attitude to environmental problems by human. Also there is a general discouragement of inhabitants vis a vis such recurring problems. Development has been real. But the question is: is development sustainable. The answer is clear: NO. So what do we do from here? AHEAD has written to the authorities since 2008. Some drains have been constructed but a holistic approach to public infrastructure is necessary. We need social dialogue with the authorities. AHEAD takes the problem of waters seriously as it is affecting the lives of people every year and each time there is heavy rain.
11.01.2018 | Suraj Ray