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Sunday, 28 May 2017 14:22

Local NGO to construct earth bag houses to flood affected families in Karonga

Written by  Bishop Witmos
Construction of earth bags house  underway in Karonga - Pic by Bishop Witmos Construction of earth bags house underway in Karonga - Pic by Bishop Witmos

Karonga, May 28, 2017: As torrential rains continue to damage hundreds of houses year in and out in Karonga, a local Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) called Loncha Development Centre which is based in Rumphi has launched a project of constructing houses using earth bags in order to minimize the effects of the disaster in the lakeshore district.

The Centre, has invested close to K18 Million from a Germany based ‘Support Malawi Organization’ in order to support over 100 flood affected households in the area of Traditional Authority Kilupula with flood resilient houses for two years.

Close to 800 houses were demolished by heavy rains that occurred from March 28 to April 3 this year in Karonga, leaving 5500 families homeless.

Speaking during the launch of the project on Friday, Executive Director for Loncha Development Centre, Moya Walita said that most of the houses in Karonga are constructed with material that easily break when it floods.

‘‘We discovered that year in and out, a number of houses are demolished by floods in Karonga due to the weak construction materials. As such, we thought of supporting some of the families with houses that are made of earth bags, and the beneficially will be paying a small revolving fund,’’ said Walita.

In his remarks, Chairperson for Support Malawi Organization, Heinrich Wegener said apart from the fact that earth bag houses are resilient to flooding, the houses are also friendly to environment.

 ‘‘Construction of houses using empty bags can work in every part of Malawi because it require cheap materials such as soil and bags. Apart from that Malawi has lost many trees through burning of bricks, with the new technology, we hope that wanton cutting down of trees would be minimized,” said Wegner.

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