Four hundred thousand residents evacuated from the city of Goma

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Goma, May 29th, 2021 (CPA).- Four hundred thousand people were evacuated from the city of Goma because of the danger that the eruption of the Nyiragongo volcano still represents for the population of the capital of North Kivu and its surroundings, indicated Friday, the provincial coordinator of civil protection in North Kivu, Joseph Makundi, after a meeting to assess the current situation following this eruption of Nyiragongo, chaired by the provincial governor of North Kivu , Lieutenant General Constant Ndima, in the provincial governorate in Goma. These evacuations are carried out on three axes including Goma-Rwanda, Goma-Rutshuru-Kiwanja and the Goma-Sake-Masisi axis, Joseph Makundi explained before deploring two cases of traffic accidents which caused the death of two people. The governor of North Kivu province, Lieutenant General Constant Ndima, revealed to the meeting’s audience that he is closely monitoring the movement of the evacuated population in the red zones. Lieutenant General Constant Ndima, who noted that populations are already starting to settle in the sites and focal points identified, estimated that this state of affairs will facilitate the assistance of the government and humanitarian workers in the coming days. He invited the provincial division of health and civil protection to activate epidemiological surveillance and care for unaccompanied children.

Lieutenant-General Constant Ndima also encouraged the members of the ad hoc committee responsible for monitoring and evaluating the damage linked to the volcanic eruption of May 22, to work more, by supplying drinking water to the population’s evacuees, food and non-food assistance and health care administration. He called on the population of the city of Goma and its surroundings to be vigilant and to stay away from the lava flows which represent a danger of death from asphyxiation or severe burns. Experts from the Goma Vulcanological Observatory (OVG) presented current data from the volcano, characterized by earthquakes and soil deformation which continue to indicate the presence of magma in the Goma area with an extension on Lake Kivu. “Comparison of acquired images and radars indicate that the interior crater atop Nyiragongo continues to widen after partial drainage of the lava lake. We still cannot currently rule out an eruption on land or under the lake, which could occur without any warning signs, ”they said. The provincial vice-governor, the experts of the OVG, the provincial security committee, the coordinators of international NGOs (Ocha) as well as those of civil protection took part in this evaluation meeting which revolved around several points namely the monitoring of the movement of the population, the humanitarian situation and the relative assessment of the current situation of the Nyiragongo volcano. ACp/Fng/nig