Somalia Disaster Management Agency Faces Backlash Over Sandbag Placement in Flood-Prone Areas


Doolow, Somalia - The Somalia Disaster Management Agency (SoDMA) and its commissioner, Mohamud Moallim, are facing widespread criticism on social media following the placement of sandbags in residential areas near the Jubba and Dawo rivers in Doolow town, Gedo region.

The move, described as a "preventive measure" against possible flash floods, has been met with backlash from the public, with many labeling it an "insult to the nation" and an "irresponsibility."

With heavy rainfall forecasted in southern Somalia in the coming weeks, experts warn of potential flash floods that could severely impact residents living in the areas near the rivers. This has prompted calls for immediate evacuation from the flood-prone zones.

The SoDMA has been actively working on flood prevention measures, with recent efforts focusing on distributing sandbags in areas at high risk of flooding, particularly along river lines. However, the decision to place sandbags in residential areas near the Jubba and Dawo rivers has sparked controversy and debate among the public.

Critics argue that the measure is insufficient and may even be counterproductive, as it could lull residents into a false sense of security and delay necessary evacuations. Others have accused the SoDMA of being reactive rather than proactive in its approach to disaster management, pointing to the agency's past responses to crises as evidence of a broader pattern of mismanagement.

The controversy has also brought attention to broader issues within Somalia's disaster management infrastructure. The country has been grappling with a series of climate-induced crises, including devastating floods and droughts that have displaced millions and exacerbated food insecurity.

Critics argue that the SoDMA's focus on short-term solutions, such as sandbag placement, detracts from the need for more comprehensive, long-term strategies to address the root causes of these crises.

The SoDMA and Commissioner Moallim have yet to respond to the public outcry, but the controversy highlights the challenges facing Somalia's disaster management efforts and the need for greater transparency and accountability in the agency's operations.


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