In the Democratic Republic of Congo, the Mwangaza Network, a collective of civil society organizations in the energy sector, is advancing. Two months before the inauguration of the Busanga hydroelectric power plant in the southern Katanga region, more than a thousand people, who have been expropriated from their homes by the Chinese company Sicohydro, are still waiting for compensation.
as reported from Lubumbashi, Denise maheho
For a year, the inhabitants of the three neighboring villages of Busanga hydropower plants are homeless. Their houses were destroyed in favor of the dam and their fields were flooded by water from the power plant’s retention basin.
A displaced resident, Machozi Alphonsine, has testified about the living conditions for a year: “Our villages have been destroyed by those who build the dam. We took refuge here in the bush. We had built huts there. Unfortunately, we are exposed to double victims because now we are suffering from floods. Where can we go? “
The demands of these communities are not heard by the Congolese state or by the company Sicohydro, the initiator of the project. The work with the dam is coming to an end, however civil society organizations accompany the victims are fixed. They demand dispute resolution.
“The victims have never been compensated and in addition they now live in flood zones. Traces of damage can disappear. These groups must be able to exercise their right to appeal with evidence. So there will be no inauguration without compensation for these communities, ”warns Me Freddy Kasongo, a member of the Mwangaza network.
At present, the several missions carried out by the provincial government in Lualaba to assess the compensation for the victims have not yielded any results.
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