Storms Damage Several Structures in Bong

GBARNGA, Bong – Violent storms have damaged several public facilities and dwelling homes in Gbarnga, Bong.

The John F. Bakalu Junior High School, Bong’s oldest public junior high school; the Feleta Children’s Village Elementary and Junior High School; and several other public structures were among the damaged buildings.

Victims of the storms have launched appeals to the government and institutions such as the Red Cross to help them repair their structures. They are appealing for building materials.

The principal of the Bakalu School, David Gbokay, told The Bush Chicken that the damage done to the school of 1, 375 students has “paralyzed normal academic activities.”

The principal of John F. Bakalu, David Gbokay. Photo: Moses Bailey.

“We are not having classes at the moment. We need help to get the school up and functional again for our students,” Gbokay said.

After several years in ruin, the school was renovated in 2016 with funds from the Legislative Support Projects.

Maceslina Marshall Paye, the principal of the Feleta Children Village, says the storm removed the roof of the school.

The Feleta Children Village School. Photo: Obe Smith.

Like Bakalu, students of the Feleta Children Village are also currently out of school, according to Marshall-Paye.

“If there is no intervention, the children will be out of school for some time,” Marshall-Paye noted.

Meanwhile, the Rep. Marvin Cole of Bong’s third electoral district has made donations to storms’ victims in Gbarnga – the community worst affected. Cole provided 100 bundles of roofing sheets to victims in the Civil Compound Community for distribution.

“It is prudent to take the first step as their representative to ensure some measures are put in place to begin helping them,” Cole said.

The representative of Bong’s third electoral district, Marvin Cole. Photo: Obe Smith.

Cole also provided 50 cartoons of floor tiles to the Gbarnga Free Pentecostal Church and 25 bags of cement to the Hope International Church.

Cole’s donations also affected the Gbarnga City Cooperation and a group of pastors; he gave them each one drum of diesel fuel. Beneficiaries of Cole’s gestures extended appreciation to him for the intervention.

“We applaud you for this and God will bless you,” the head of the Civil Compound Community said to Cole.

Liberia’s former ambassador to the United States, Jeremiah Sulunteh, has also provided roofing sheets to the Dolokelen Gboveh High School for repair on its facilities affected by the storms.

An associate of Sulunteh, John Flomo, said the former ambassador was aware of the damage done to the school and the donation was his way of contributing to ensure that the institution is revamped.

This is not the first time for storms to damage structures in Gbarnga. In March 2017, storms damaged several buildings in Gbarnga. The county’s biggest community radio station, Radio Gbarnga, had its roof destroyed and several of its broadcast equipment damaged. The station was off for a little over two months.
Radio Gbarnga returned to the airwaves following the intervention of community members, institutions, and Internews.

Featured photo by Moses Bailey

Moses Bailey

Moses started his journalism career in 2010 as a reporter at Radio Gbarnga. In 2011, the Press Union of Liberia recognized him as the Human Rights Reporter of the Year. In 2017, he was the Development Reporter of the Year. He is also an Internews Health Journalism Fellow. Moses is also the regional coordinator for NAYMOTE-Liberia, an organization working with youth to promote democratic governance.

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