Flood-Ravaged Pakistan Cancels Independence Day Events

As reported by CNN

Pakistan canceled independence day celebrations Saturday as a second wave of floods continued to put millions in peril, the nation’s prime minister said.

Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani said the devastating floods had affected 20 million people, a figure much larger than officials had given earlier. Gilani said some religious events connected to Ramadan were also canceled.

“In solidarity with the flood victims, all independence day celebrations have been canceled and moreover, all Iftar dinner events and celebration of eid by government ministries have been canceled so that these resources can be utilized in the affected areas,” Gilani said.

A second wave of floodwater is expected to wash through southern Pakistan this weekend, adding hundreds of thousands of people to the number already stranded by a first wave earlier this month, Pakistani officials said.

At least 1,384 people have died and 1,630 more have been injured by flooding that has damaged or destroyed 8,300 Pakistani villages so far, according to Ahmed Kamal, spokesman for the National Disaster Management Authority.

The United Nations said it was racing against time to reach the suffering.

“Relief supplies must reach women, men and children as soon as possible, in order to avoid further death caused by waterborne diseases and food shortages,” said Martin Mogwanja, the United Nations’ humanitarian coordinator for Pakistan.

“The death toll has so far been relatively low compared with other major natural disasters, and we want to keep it that way,” he said.

Pakistan emergency officials predicted the second wave could reach Sukkar on Saturday evening.

Hundreds of thousands of people living along the Indus River in northern Sindh could be stranded, along with the tens of thousands stranded by the first wave, said Lt. Cmdr. Jawad Khawaja of the Pakistani navy.

Many residents have ignored government warnings to evacuate the area, causing a big concern, Khawaja said.

It estimated that 723,950 homes have been damaged or destroyed.

    • Engineer Sadiq Khan
    • August 22nd, 2010

    Mr. Ahmed Kamal Member National Disaster Management Authority Pakistan (NDMA); The most corrupt Engineer in the History Pakistan
    The floods triggered by monsoon rains in Pakistan have killed more than 1250 people (numbers will raise). More than sixteen million people have become homeless.

    While nature has been unkind it is important to see how responsible organization of Pakistan for prevention of floods has performed, so that improvements can be put in place to avoid similar disasters in future. The Federal Flood for Commission Pakistan ( FFC) works under Ministry of Water & Power. FFC has rights to plan , monitor and execute flood control projects for effective management of floods. Since its establishment in 1976, it has spent Rs. 35.8 billion and $ 400 million (Rs 34 billion) on floods mitigation projects. Where has all this money gone?

    The recent floods have exposed the incompetence and corruption in this department. Five days ago, The Chief Minster of Punjab after making inspections of many bogus or non-existent projects, especially in South-Punjab, ordered an inquiry at the highest level but federal government is still unmoved over the criminal negligence of FCC.

    The most serious and catastrophic devastating impacts of floods was faced in District Nowshera and Charsadda of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa. Huge sums of money has been spent here with nothing to show. one of the main culprits of the huge embezzlement is the Chief Engineer of FCC Mr Ahmed Kamal. He recently managed to get deputed as a Member, National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) and has also act as spokesman of NDMA.

    This very same person after looting billions of rupees has asked people to donate their money for flood victims. While donation flow in, it is important that the government punish people like him and others who have made this tragedy far worse than it ought to have been.

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