The coast town of Chimbote was among the worst hit by a massive earthquake which devastated the northern coastal areas of Peru in May, 1970.
The coast town of Chimbote was among the worst hit by a massive earthquake which devastated the northern coastal areas of Peru in May, 1970. The final death toll was over 50,000.
Although relief funds flowed in, much of the money has been blocked up till now by squabbles as to how it should be spent. In addition, the Organisation for the Development of the Affected Zone (ORDEZA) has been criticised for indecisiveness and lack of planning.
But now the government, especially the Ministry of Housing, has started to distribute the money and it is estimated that 300 million U.S. dollars (GBP120 million sterling) will have been spent on reconstruction by 1975. Nearly 7,000 housing units will be constructed in Chimbote alone.
Although this year should see the turning point, the problem will be far from over when the homes have been built. Many of them stand unoccupied because they are too far from places of work, others already show signs of falling apart, and many of the disaster victims prefer to remain in the wattle and daub shelters they put up after the earthquake.
SYNOPSIS: The People of the coastal town of Chimbote in Peru were among those worst hit by the massive earthquake which devastated the country in May 1970. The final death toll was over 50,000 and in the poorer sections of Chimbote nearly every house was reduced to rubble.
Although considerable relief funds flowed into Peru, much of it was blocked by internal squabbles as to how it should be spent. For two years there was very little construction.
Now, three years later, many of Chimbote's buildings still stand ruined and unusable. But government agencies have started to distribute their money. By 1975 about 300 million U.S. dollars will have been spent.
The Ministry of Housing has been active in building new estates.
Nearly 7,000 housing units are planned for Chimbote alone, but many of those which have been built stand unoccupied, because they are too far from places of work.
The Organisation for the Development of the Affected Zone, ORDEZA, has received considerable criticism for its planning. In addition much of the building has been shoddy so that new houses are already falling apart. Labour has been diverted to supply urgently needed running repairs, thus putting Government blueprints behind the clock.
The temporary dwellings which the earthquake victims made themselves from straw mats, wattle and daub are coming to be seen as permanent homes.
Although this year should see the turning point in the reconstruction programme, ORDEZA estimates that at least tow more years are heeded for its completion.