13 old RAK houses damaged in rains to be repaired soon

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13 old RAK houses damaged in rains to be repaired soon

Official says the ministry is coordinating with the local bodies concerned to identify all houses affected by the showers.

By Ahmed Shaaban/senior Reporter

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Published: Tue 27 Jan 2015, 1:16 AM

Last updated: Thu 25 Jun 2015, 10:32 PM

Officials from the Ministry of Public Works assessing the damage at an old house in Al Dheit, Ras Al Khaimah, caused by the recent rains in the emirate. — Supplied photos

Ras Al Khaimah — The Ministry of Public Works has approved the urgent maintenance works at 13 old houses badly affected by the recent showers in the Rashid district of Al Dheit area in Ras Al Khaimah.

According to a senior official, the maintenance works started on Sunday so that the Emirati families who were forced to vacate their houses can move back as soon as possible.

Zahra Al Abudi, Undersecretary of the ministry, said a technical committee visited many of the houses affected by the rains in Ras Al Khaimah. “The ministry is to instantly start maintenance works in the most affected 13 houses.”

Some contractors have been assigned to carry out the maintenance works up to the highest standards and as fast as possible so that the residents can move back quickly, she added.

Al Abudi said the ministry is coordinating with the local bodies concerned to identify all houses affected by the showers. “While maintenance works are no longer useful for some houses, mainly the old ones which will be seriously affected in case of future rain, if any, the ministry has adopted a thorough plan to replace 13,000 houses built before 1990 across the country.”

A report on the houses affected by the rains in Ras Al Khaimah shall be considered as well to check if it is possible to enlist them in the 13,000 houses to be rebuilt all over the country, she noted.

“The main problem is the lack of a proper stormwater drainage in Ras Al Khaimah, and that is not the responsibility of the ministry but rather of the RAK Municipality and the RAK Department of Public Works and Services.”

Al Abudi said the ministry spares no effort to help all nationals affected by the rains return to their homes. “We are now focusing on providing a proper, yet quick, maintenance of these houses,” she said, noting that the conditions of these houses are not the same, and hence the duration and type of repairs needed.

Meanwhile, the Emiratis whose houses have been affected by the rains in Rashid district of Al Dheit area have urged the bodies concerned to find a final solution and enlist their old houses under the replacement programme.

Abu Saeed, one of the Emiratis whose houses have been badly affected by the recent showers, said some of the affected houses here have been built in the early 1980s. “However, they are not listed with those houses built in the 1990s to be replaced.”

Abu Saleh, Emirati, said parts of his house, particularly the roof, have collapsed due to the rain. “My six-member family escaped certain death after part of the ceiling in the hall collapsed because of the leaking rainwater, but the ministry’s committee did not visit our house.”

“Lack of a proper drainage has made the problem of our old houses worse. We can no longer stay there, otherwise I will be risking the lives of all my family members,” said Abu Salem, Emirati.

ahmedshaaban@khaleejtimes.com



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