Heavy rains are here with us and as expected by those who are foresighted, there is displacement and destruction across the country. Houses are being destroyed and many people are consequently being rendered homeless, roads and bridges are being swept away and farms are being flattened!
Newspaper pictures and TV images display cases of hopelessness: houses that have been reduced to heaps of mud and roads which have been turned into temporary rivers and lakes. In Bukoba, for instance, a downpour destroyed at least 100 houses, leaving 178 people with nowhere to stay.
In Dar es Salaam, Tanzania’s most sophisticated city has not been spared—as usual. Many roads in neighbourhoods have been damaged, with some being so damaged as to become impassable. In some areas, the situation is worsened by haphazard development of plots which does not consider that fact that allowance has to be made so that water from the heavens can flow to the ocean.
Stubbornness, ignorance and selfishness on the part of developers often play a big part in messing drainage in residential areas. There is a need to raise disaster awareness and preparedness in our people if we are to lessen calamities that come with the rains.