Categorized | National News

Gibson Says Hurricane Efforts Picking Up

After a lag in the progress of hurricane restoration efforts over the past few months, Minister Responsible for Restoration Shane Gibson said he is pleased to report that the process has “picked up.”

 Last October, hundreds particularly in the northwestern Bahamas were devastated by the monster storm’s impact; leaving families displaced.

 “I’ve seen where the numbers did increase. We did some restructuring in the area. We strengthened the team. We now see more coming out of especially Andros, where we were really concerned about. There were a number of settlements who had not gotten any relief at all. Quite a number of vouchers have gone down there; and Nassau is beginning to pick up,” Minister Gibson said.

 Updating reporters outside Cabinet yesterday, Mr. Gibson said rebuilding efforts are not going as quickly as the repair efforts; but steady progress is being made.

 “We have already completed the designs of the new homes we built from the coastline, and they’re now waiting on the Ministry of Works approval. Construction should start in the next few weeks. It took slightly longer than the repairs because we had to redesign homes away from the coastline,” Mr. Gibson explained.

 There are some residents on the affected family islands who refuse to build homes away from the coastline, in light of the grave danger in the event of flooding during such storms.

 Mr. Gibson noted that the government will do its best to address this issue.

 “Some residents don’t want to move. For those who want to move we will relocate them. For those who don’t want to move, we can’t force them to move. They’ve been there for a few generations, and if they insist they want to stay we don’t pressure them.

 “There will come a time when we will have to do that as a government; because when you start putting your life in jeopardy, you put others as well. When you decide to stay on the coastline, and you hear a hurricane is coming, all of a sudden you realize you can’t stay anymore,” he said.

 ‘Then we have to send a relief team to get you out; which means that we are putting the lives of those people in jeopardy. I’m sure that there will come a time that the government will have to make it mandatory that certain areas residents will not be able to build,” he added.

 A few months back, the government estimated that it would cost over half a billion dollars to recover from Hurricane Matthew.





Written by Jones Bahamas

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