Prime Minister Mark Phillips, today visited Lethem, Tabatinga and other locations in Upper Takutu – Upper Essequibo (Region Nine) to assess the flooding of several communities.
A number of low-lying communities are inundated due to heavy rainfall and water run-off from neighbouring Brazil.
Prime Minister Phillips was accompanied by Civil Defence Commission (CDC) Director General (ag), Major Loring Benons, Mayor John Macedo, Town Clerk Keisha Vincent, and representatives from the Regional Democratic Council (RDC) along with other government agencies.
The visiting officials met with regional, municipal and community leaders upon arrival and were briefed on the current status of households, farms, livestock and assets of those impacted.
Regional Vice Chairman, Mr Bertie Xavier, reported that while water levels in some parts are as much as six inches, persons are continuing to manage the impacts to their properties.
It was confirmed that a total of four shelters are now in use; one at the Tabatinga Sports Complex, one at the Tabatinga Nursery School, another at the Culvert City Nursery School, and one more at the CDC Regional Disaster Risk Management Centre. More than 130 persons are occupying the shelters.
The team then visited several areas in the region, where the Prime Minister again stressed the importance of moving to high ground.
The issue of potable water was a priority for the team and Prime Minister Phillips ensured that collapsible water containers and water purification tablets were being distributed efficiently.
He also highlighted the diligent logistical work of those in the region as all shelters were being catered to with the basic necessities.
At the shelters, Prime Minister Phillips interacted with various occupants who expressed gratitude for the swift action by the CDC and regional authorities to move them to safer ground.
The possibility of having more shelters was discussed and the agencies and government bodies assured the Prime Minister of their readiness to render further assistance to impacted residents.
The CDC is urging persons countrywide to take precautions where necessary and to report any impacts to local authorities or the National Emergency Monitoring System (NEMS) on 600-7500 or 226-1114 at any time.