Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Pushback on Yangon flood warnings

By Ye Mon   |   Tuesday, 04 August 2015
Taikkyi township residents are resisting Yangon regional government appeals for them to evacuate their homes as rising water levels threaten the Pann embankment. About 1000 military and civilian workers are filling sandbags to contain the possible threat, the authorities announced yesterday, even as Tatmadaw units are standing by to carry out a possible evacuation.
U Soe Min, regional minister for agriculture and livestock, told The Myanmar Times yesterday that the regional government was particularly concerned about Apyauk.
The town is between the old Pann embankment, which is threatened with flooding, and the new embankment. Residents are resisting government pressure to relocate.
“The residents don’t want to move because they say their homes can withstand the floods and they did not want to abandon them. We are reinforcing flood defences as I speak, with 400 soldiers and 600 civilians at work, but if the floods come, the residents will have to evacuate,” he said.
The minister said no other part of Taikkyi was at risk.
Apyauk resident U Kyaw Lin told The Myanmar Times on August 2 that residents did not fear flooding, despite the rising water, and did not want to move.
“I heard the water is close to the warning level. But the government is working on the flood defences. I believe the water will soon start to recede and we will not have to move,” he said.
Another concern is the Nga Moe Yeik dam in Hlegu township. U Kun Chun, deputy director of the regional Irrigation Department, said on August 2 at a press conference that waters in the dam were just 0.3 of an inch short of the warning level, potentially threatening North Dagon, South Okkalapa and Thingangyun townships. However, he said there was no cause for concern. “Some Yangon townships are experiencing flooding, but that is because of tides. The tide is now on the ebb,” he said.
Chief engineer for water and sanitation U Myo Thein said Kandawgyi and Inya lakes had not flooded

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