Categories: Politics

Indigenous people report hunger, lack of water and destruction after rains in Bahia

Indigenous people report hunger, lack of water and destruction after rains in Bahia

Indigenous leaders heard by CNN reported a scenario of destruction in communities in the South and West of Bahia after the rains that left 20 people dead and at least 30,000 homeless. The coordinator of the United Movement of Indigenous Peoples and Organization of the state of Bahia (Mupoiba), Agnaldo Pataxó Hã Hã Hãe, calculates that at least 9,000 indigenous people were affected by the rains, which is equivalent to 15% of the 60,000 that live in the state.

“These are completely flooded villages, interrupted roads preventing communities from having access to cities, several that have lost all their plantations. There is no drinking water. The situation is very difficult”, said Agnaldo Pataxó Hã Hã Hãe, coordinator of the United Movement of Peoples and Indigenous Organization of the State of Bahia.

The storm, classified by Governor Rui Costa as the greatest natural disaster in Bahian history, significantly affected three peoples living in the extreme south of the state: the Pataxó, the Tupinambá and the Pataxó Hã Hã Hãe.

Mupoiba demands that the state government help traditional peoples more quickly. The group has coordinated donations of hygiene materials, food and drinking water to those who are still isolated and to those who have lost their crops due to heavy rains. At the moment, according to the group, 10 indigenous people are awaiting air rescue in the city of Pau Brasil.

“Bridges are submerged, others have fallen. What remains for us is to carry out campaigns to collect food, there are people who are cold with the water in their homes”, said the indigenous Nataly, from the Tupinambá people of Olivença.

The rains in the first half of December had already significantly affected the indigenous peoples of southern Bahia. Mupoiba sent an official letter to Governor Rui Costa on December 16, reporting that hundreds of families were left in “a state of calamity and social vulnerability, mainly food insecurity. They are isolated and isolated families in their villages due to the flooding of rivers and the destruction of bridges and access roads to the communities”, says an excerpt of the document.

To CNN, Governor Rui Costa said this Monday (27) that the government’s initial priority was to assist those who were at risk of life. “The disaster is of such proportion that we sought to help those who were at risk of life. Now we are looking at isolated people. It seems that they chose Bahia to be the setting for those films about the destruction of the Earth”, he said.

See the damage caused by the rains in Bahia:

Reference: CNN Brasil