Standard Lesotho Bank has donated groceries to the tune of M10 thousand to seventy Lihlokong families whose houses were damaged by a storm in Mafeteng district.
70 families of Lihlokong village were last week left stranded without roofs over their heads when a storm swept through the village, damaging property and physically harming people and animals. Most of the stranded families live in makeshift tents donated by Disaster Management Authority (DMA) with blankets and mattresses donated by World Vision.
The storm also destroyed power wires and water pipes leaving the villagers without electricity, water and lavatories.
Families live in clusters of three to four groups in the four tents hoisted in separate areas in the village, with the fifth yet to be hoisted when all equipment needed has been made available.
Chief Maphoka Matete said several people and animals were harmed during the storm amongst them a child who has since been admitted to Mafeteng hospital.
“A little girl has been admitted at Mafeteng hospital after a roof collapsed on her head whilst inside her home and one man has been referred to Tsepong hospital in Maseru with serious injuries to his arm. Some animals had to be slaughtered prematurely because they had also sustained fatal injuries.
When the sun sets, our hearts sink because we remember we no longer have homes to sleep in but these tents which have been kindly lent to us.
We therefore appeal to any organisation to built us houses. Even if one is not fully compensated for their loss, we ask for the little anybody can do to ensure that a family is built at least a two-roomed house”, she said.
SLB Head of Marketing Makeabetsoe Mabaleha told the group the food SLB has donated was a short term response which they thought to be essential while the bank sought for a permanent solution.
“SLB have brought the food donation to so that nobody goes to bed on an empty stomach. We have thought of the children who still have to wake up for school daily during this time that they do not deserve to go to school hungry.
Our hearts go out to everyone here today because you are our valued customers. At SLB we value lives because we also come from such humble backgrounds and this little we have brought today is our way of giving back.
Do not hesitate to come knocking on our doors when you need anything else, our partnership you does not end here. From here SLB will further knock on more doors to find organisations who would help with re-building your houses”, she said.
On behalf of the afflicted families, Mokhobi Thupeng said the greatest challenge facing the villagers was how they would ever built their houses again.
“I built my house when I was still a young man working in the mines but I am now an old man who makes a living out of farming. We work in the fields to put something to eat on the table but we do not have money to build ourselves houses, houses are built with money”, he lamented.
According to a Local Government representative from the Mamantso Community Council Tau Matlakala counselling sessions would have to be conducted for some members who have been psychologically affected by the disaster.