Liberia Maritime Authority Reaches Out to Victims of Flood Disaster

The Liberia Maritime Authority (LiMA) is in sympathy with the residents of 20th to 24th Street, PHP Community, Popo Beach New-Kru Town, and all others affected by the violent rise in tidal waves that swept away over twenty-five houses and left dozens of families homeless. This was an “Act of God”, therefore unpredictable. The Authority believes that climate change and the laws of nature predict that the sea will always inch its way further inland if unobstructed; however this devastating trend is exacerbated by continuous illegal mining of sand on beachfront properties. There have been countless public awareness programs on the issue of illegal sand mining. It causes unnatural erosion that put at risk life and property, but unfortunately warnings have been unheeded. Massive sand mining on our beaches leave our shores vulnerable and unprotected against the relentless advances of the sea and the unsettling, often violent effects of climate change.

A team from the Liberia Maritime Authority headed by Deputy Commissioner Yekeson and Ellen Ferguson Director for Corporate Social Responsibility(CSR), reached out to the beach communities of New Kru Town (Funde, Popo Beach and Corner West) and PHP community, 20th Street Sinkor and Fiama with the distribution a total of one hundred and twenty five bags of rice. Distribution of relief items were done according to the size of the community, and the gravity of the damages. The Governor of New-Kru Town Hon. Peter Cole expressed his sincere appreciation of the efforts of the Liberia Maritime Authority (LiMA) in his community. From the continuation of the Authority’s “Reclaiming Liberia’s Beaches and Waterways” Project starting this Wednesday September 7th that will employ 500 persons, to Maritime scholarships for several of the brightest students of the community, and now a donation of 50 bags of rice, the “Borrow” is truly feeling the impact of the Authority’s CSR programs. In PHP Community where the “Waterways” project has been ongoing since January of 2011(eighty persons employed and paid through the bank), twenty five bags of rice were turned over to the community leader Mr. Peter Cole. On 20th Street Sinkor also part of the “Waterways” project (50 persons employed) Mr. Peter Gweh received twenty five bags of rice for his community. Fiama where they were victim of floods from the swamp, Mr. Augustin Victor received twenty five bags of rice for community dwellers that were affected.

The gesture is a small one, but residents from all communities were made to feel and understand once again that “Building a Maritime Nation”, a vision of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and therefore a mandate the Liberia Maritime Authority intends to fulfill. Although job creation and increased revenue generation from Liberia’s Maritime Sector is key component of this vision, reaching out to Liberia’s deserving underprivileged is primordial. The Reclaiming Liberia’s Beaches and Waterways project will continue starting this Wednesday 7th of September in West Point, New-Kru Town, Slipway Community, Jallah Town, and ELWA.

The Liberia Maritime Authority is cautioning Liberians, most especially beachfront and waterfront community dwellers to be on alert during the rainy season and high tidal wave conditions as water levels are higher than normal. Living dangerously close to the waterfront is also a huge risk community dwellers expose themselves to. Moreover the Authority continues to spread the message that Illegal Beach Sand Mining is one the leading causes of sea erosion, factor of the disaster that happened recently in several of our communities.

It cannot be overemphasized that perpetrators should desist immediately from Illegal Beach Sand Mining. Save Liberia’s beautiful coastline and the lives of our people. The financial gains can never be worth the devastating consequences.

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