For the past couple weeks we have been reporting on the flooding across the country. As we’ve shown you, thousands have been affected.  They have suffered losses in personal property, as well as investments in agriculture and livestock. The country’s infrastructure has also taken a beating as well from the floods. As of Sunday, there were two hundred and eighty-eight persons in shelters across the Orange Walk, Cayo and Belize districts.  On Monday, when we caught up with Orlando Habet the Minister of Disaster Risk Management with responsibility for NEMO, we asked him for an update on some of the flooding issues and how the government is responding to this emergency. Habet says that the issue would be raised in today’s cabinet meeting because they are seeking to provide assistance to families who have been displaced:

Orlando Habet, Minister of Disaster Risk Management

“The Cayo area is still problematic because the low lying bridge is out. The Iguana Creek Bridge is also out and we see the water now starting to recede but we know that in a week or ten days time it will be down to the Belize River Valley. As you rightfully mentioned, Crooked Tree has some problems and then it flowed down into the May Pen area. Through the assistance of the BLPA, Minister Mai and Mennonite Community in Blue Creek, they were able to salvage a lot of the animals and do some evacuations. They had about three hundred and twenty-five animals that they wanted to take out and I think for the first day they had like a hundred and ten out and they continued working. We know that it will be a problem within the next week or ten days because the water was just getting up to its maximum in those areas and then coming a week later with more rains. I also know that we will be having today and tomorrow with lesser rainfall but then Wednesday and Thursday, according to the Met Office, we will also be having another one or two inches of rain. Also, a problem apart from the rivers is that there has been a lot of destruction to the highways and also the roads of which the responsibility falls under the Ministry of Works.  So, today that was the best day to start working there is some work already being done but it will take a long time to actually be able to repair these roads. Also the NEMO committee that is responsible for food has already informed the Prime Minister and a portion of cabinet that there is also a great need for food assistance. So, tomorrow at cabinet that will come up in the discussion to see how the government can find the funding to assist these people who are really in need; those who are in shelters and those who possibly didn’t find official shelter but staying with some family or friends home.”

Channel 5