Vice President, Inonge Wina has directed the Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit to dispatch a team of officers to Kitwe, Luanshya and Kalumbila, to conduct a rapid assessment on affected infrastructure in the three districts.
This follows a report by the Parliamentary Committee on Cabinet Affairs, which conducted a tour of disaster prone areas on the Copperbelt and North-western provinces.
In Luanshya district, the team will assess the Akatiti and Chonga tailing dams, which have posed a serious hazard to the community’s livelihoods, environment and vital installations.
The situation is an emergency and must be worked on before the onset of the 2019/2020 rainfall season in order to prevent a disaster.
The team will further conduct an assessment on the estimated 150 houses which have developed serious cracks on the walls in ChaChaCha Township in Kitwe district. The cracks on the bases and walls of the houses were caused by vibrations as a result of mine blasting from the mines managed by ZCCM-IH.
Mrs. Wina says the exercise in Kitwe is important in order to establish the extent of the damage, the number of affected households and the impact of the mining activities on the affected population.
The team will also conduct an assessment on the 84 houses which collapsed, affecting approximately 500 people in Tundula, Kalumbila district of North-western province. The collapse of the houses was due to heavy rainfall experienced during the last season. DMMU provided relief food and shelter to the affected households as an immediate response to the situation.
And DMMU National Coordinator Chanda Kabwe has assured the Vice President that the team will be on the ground by tomorrow, Saturday 8th to make sure the assessment is done in order to provide timely interventions on the findings on the ground
Mr. Kabwe said the assessments in the three districts will guide DMMU in coming up with appropriate intervention measures to mitigate the impacts of the respective damages in order to ensure no lives are lost and that normalcy is restored within the shortest possible time.
The team is composed of Officers from DMMU, Geological Survey, Department of Evaluators and Mines Safety. The assessment will take six days, upon which a report will be generated to guide the appropriate interventions.
This is contained in a statement issued to the media by DMMU Communications Officer Rachael Mupanga.