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Oct 26, 2015

Bomba Under Water One Week After Massive Weekend Downpour

Bomba is a small community off the Old Northern Highway in the Belize Rural North constituency. There are twenty-seven families living in the village without electricity even though wires were installed since January of this year. So while the families live without power supply, they now have to face other challenges resulting from the flooding of last weekend. Waters are receding, but very slowly and they are unable to put bread on their table because all their produce has been destroyed and so is any prospect of tourism income. News Five’s Duane Moody was in the village and has the following report.


Duane Moody, Reporting

It’s been almost a week since waters have receded in the city following the epic floods on the weekend of October eighteenth. While the city continues to recover from the natural phenomenon, the remote village of Bomba in the Belize River Valley is still experiencing the effects.   The torrential rains wreaked havoc on the village and while some residents had to be evacuated the higher ground, others braved the weather inside their homes, with water levels above their knees.


Ana Marylou Ramirez

Ana Marylou Ramirez, Chairlady, Bomba Village

“We get a lot of flood and the Bomba road is in very bad condition,. Mostly only high vehicles and tractors can pass through. It’s going down but very slowly. In the village we have about twenty-seven families and everybody is affected because we do not have the access in and out of the village because of the road that is flooded. So everybody get affected.”


There are currently twenty-seven families living in the village. Primarily farmers, the residents make their living from working the land as well as tourism.  But most of the farms have been destroyed by the floods.


Ana Marylou Ramirez

“It is still affecting Bomba a lot…especially the farmers; the road, their products are dying and the road to the farm, the water is like this high. They were able to cross in their vehicles and I understand that a lot of their sweep peppers and tomatoes were spoiled.”


Magarita Ramirez, Resident, Bomba

“It really affect everybody in the village because we depend on tourists and some of the people do farming. The ones who do farming they lose most of their products because everything is under water. And for we, weh do the tourists, my husband run the tourists and this is what we do for our living and it affects us because the water no tourists can come through. Even you know the water was way up to their house so no way that any boat or thing could come in because the bus couldn’t go through the water because the water was way to your chest. So there is no way for us to make any income here in Bomba right now so the floods really affect us a lot.”


Today, the entrance to the village remains under at least a foot and a half of water in some parts and residents are using bicycles, tractors and even canoes to get out of the village. Children were out of school for a week and until today were able to return to classes.


Ernesto Ramirez

Ernesto Ramirez, Resident, Bomba Village

“I have kids weh going to school. Last week di kids noh gone dah school one whole week; they just started this week. And we have kids weh di go to King’s College weh have to deal with this water everyday too. So this flood really di affect we.”


Ana Marylou Ramirez

“Everybody get affected and especially the school children…the kids going to high school, they have to ride their bicycles to get the bus from Maskall because no bus goes to Bomba. They have to walk through the water, push their bicycles, take their uniform to change.”


Magarita Ramirez

The Ministry of Health has since visited the village and tests have confirmed that the waters are contaminated. Residents remain concerned.


Magarita Ramirez

“We did have the Ministry of Health come in and they took some of the water and tested it and the water was all contaminated. And they brought some kind of pills that they throw in the water and stuff. But the kids to school it affect them greatly because whole of last week, they couldn’t go to school because there’s no way coming in and out.”


To make the unfortunate situation worse, the village is without electricity and residents are asking for help.


Ana Marylou Ramirez

“The B.D.F. went there once and took rations, a little package for the people affected, but so far no other help we haven’t get. The main assistance that we need is the road. We told the area rep already years ago and still told him that we need a bridge in that area, but we get no response, no betterment, nothing.”


Duane Moody

“We understand that there is another issue in terms of electricity; that’s there’s no electricity in the village.”


Ana Marylou Ramirez

“No electricity as yet. We have the posts already there, the wires—a lot of us already wired our houses—but no electricity yet. It started early this year, but so far no electricity.”


Magarita Ramirez

“I noh know…I noh know what we will do, but just pray and ask God to help. We have to find a way to help ourselves back here because we noh di get help. People woudla really need help, you know, and we noh di get it.”


Duane Moody for News Five.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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