Source : Phnom Penh Post
The National Committee for Disaster Management (NCDM) has said that 30 people have died so far in several provinces due to flooding triggered by heavy rainfall and the rising Mekong River.
The weather-related disaster has forced thousands of families to be relocated to higher ground, as the floods damaged farmland, killed husbandry and pushed local farmers into financial distress, officials announced.
The NCDM said eight provinces were affected by drought, while heavy rainfall inundated seven. The rising Mekong River ravaged five more provinces.
“This month, the floods caused by the rising Mekong River affected 99,685 families and killed 30 people. The waters inundated 41,344 hectares of farms, while 16,804 hectares of farmland were damaged,” said NCDM spokesman Keo Vy.
Seventeen cities and districts in Battambang, Banteay Meanchey, Pursat, Kampot, Ratanakkiri, Kampong Speu and Kampong Thom provinces have been under the threat of flooding since July due to the heavy levels of rainfall.
In addition to floods, some eight provinces have also been affected by drought.
“Besides Battambang and Banteay Meanchey provinces, others also suffered from drought but it was not so serious. We saved them by releasing water [from the dams].
Following the natural calamity that impacted the rural population, the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries called for an emergency meeting on Monday to work out plans to assist the victims.
The ministry’s spokesman Sreng Vuthy told The Post yesterday that at the meeting, officials discussed the distribution of seeds to farmers affected by the floods and drought.
They also evaluated losses related to crops, especially rice and animals, and how to channel assistance to the farming community.
Agricultural Minister Veng Sakhon requested his officers to prepare a report on the impact of the natural calamity and forward it to prime minister-designate Hun Sen for further action.
The Ministry of Water Resources and Meteorology announced that Tuesday and Wednesday, the Mekong River’s water level along Stung Treng, Kratie and Kampong Cham will slowly ebb.
In Kampong Cham, the water level is expected to recede, lower than the critical level it said.