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Overseas help to boost flood relief
BRAZIL last night flew in some 16 tonnes of food in response to the Guyana Government’s appeal for help as officials moved to shore up emergency relief for thousands of flood victims.
Several Cabinet ministers yesterday led teams that delivered food and other supplies to badly-hit communities after residents turned up at President Bharrat Jagdeo’s official State House residence urging him to get help to them.
Crowds turned up at the Civil Defence Commission (CDC) base in Thomas Lands, Georgetown for food boxes and large groups scrambled around vehicles distributing foodstuff in several communities yesterday.
Guyana on Wednesday appealed to the donor community for boats, canned food and inflatable dinghies as the government intensified a relief programme for the thousands hit by floods spawned by the heaviest rains in more than a century.
MORE SHELTERS OPENED
The rains eased yesterday but while several streets in the city were dry, many places in the capital and along the East Coast Demerara and on the West Demerara remained under water, chest-high in many communities.
The normal average rainfall in January is 7.3 inches, but the Met Office report shows that rainfall from January 1 to 16 exceeded 23 inches, according to GINA reports.
"We have three times the amount of rainfall and we are only half-way through the month. Since 1880, Guyana has never seen such rainfall!" exclaimed the President.
Despite no new death as a result of the deadly leptospirosis disease numerous persons showing some of the symptoms continue to turn up at the Georgetown Hospital.
Twenty persons are thought to have died from the water-borne disease which affects animals and humans.
Speaking to Stabroek News yesterday Chief Execu-tive Officer of the GHPC, Michael Khan said the death toll remains the same but around ten persons displaying some of the symptoms of the disease turned up at the hospital.
Khan said some of these persons were admitted while the others were treated and sent away.
With respect to other flood-related diseases such as dengue fever, typhoid and gastroenteritis, Khan said there has not been any such case at the hospital for the past 24 hours. He said staff continue to monitor and treat patients whether they show all of the symptoms or just a few. During a visit to the hospital yesterday scores had taken their seats in the waiting area of the Accident and Emer-gency Unit. Adults with strained faces and children crying made for a very sombre atmosphere.
Since the flooding there have been 20 suspected leptospirosis deaths and three from gastroenteritis. Some cases of dengue and typhoid have also been reported.
GEORGETOWN, Guyana (AP) - Bulldozers began repairing Guyana's seawall on Tuesday, after a section collapsed under high tides and about 100 people were left homeless along the flooded coast.
About 2,000 feet (610 meters) of the 6-foot (1.8-meter) concrete seawall that protects the capital, Georgetown, from high tides caved in on Sunday and Monday.
No deaths or injuries were reported, but dozens of homes were destroyed and squatters and coastal inhabitants sought refuge in government shelters.
About 90 percent of the South American country's 750,000 people live along the coast, which is 6 feet (1.8 meters) below sea level and is protected by an elaborate system of drains and flood control gates.