North deals with problems caused by heavy rainfall

Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci said that wounds must heal before measures are taken, as crews in the north scrambled for a second day to tackle problems created by the heavy rainfall.

“Today is not the day to search for scapegoats, but to heal wounds. But tomorrow we must take measures so that these wounds do not open again,” Akinci said.

Akinci was briefed on Sunday by several mayors and community leaders about the extent of the damage caused and the cleaning up efforts by crews of workers. He had spoken to mayors of Nicosia, Kythrea, and Dikomo, as well as community leaders of Vouno and Mia Milia.

Akinci also visited and talked to affected homeowners as well as the members of the crews battling the consequences of the heavy rainfall.

“Errors made by a human hand must also be restored by a human hand,” Akinci said, noting that even though on-site visits and evaluations of damage were being conducted, the question that should be asked was why these disasters came about and how they could be fixed.

If water streaming downhill in an attempt to reach the sea is blocked by a human hand, the water will find a way to continue its course, going either through homes or roads, Akicni said, adding that we must respect the natural environment.

The Turkish Cypriot mayor of Mia Milia said that crews have been offering their assistance for the past 36 hours, noting that the disastrous effects of the extreme weather could have been worse had they not foreseen the danger four months ago and cleared the bed of the Pedieos river that ends in Mia Milia.

On Saturday night, ‘prime-minister’ Tufan Erhurman urged the public not to drive unless it was absolutely necessary, noting that the public should not worry as all necessary measures had been taken.

Affected areas included the roundabout near the general hospital in the north, which became inaccessible due to big water flow, while the Nicosia-Famagusta road in the Mia Milia area was closed until Sunday noon.

The areas that are continuing to be affected are Vouno and Mandres.

Reports said that people whose homes had flooded were transported to hotels.