Nepal victims despair at government in wait for relief

2015-05-06 12:19
Villagers walking on a plank part of the remains of a destroyed house in the village of Barpak in north central Nepal. (Nicolas Asfouri, AFP)

Villagers walking on a plank part of the remains of a destroyed house in the village of Barpak in north central Nepal. (Nicolas Asfouri, AFP)

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Kathmandu - Many victims were still awaiting basic relief supplies on Wednesday, as foreign aid trickled in after Nepal's deadly 7.8-magnitude earthquake.

"We've received a sack of rice and that is all" since the quake on April 25, said Ishwar Shrestha, a resident of Bahrabise in Sindupalchok district, where nearly 3 000 people had died.

"All the houses here are gone, but no one from the government has come here offering help. No one. We have no place to shelter."

Frustration was growing as even those who lived closer to the capital complained of lack of relief and concern from the government.

"We have received some rice and packets of noodles, that's what we have been eating," said Sukuli Maharjan, from under a tarpaulin tent in Dharmapur, a village on the outskirts of Kathmandu.

"I don't know how we will build the house. We had some wheat from our fields but it got buried in our house."

The quake destroyed entire towns and blocked roads in the mountainous country. The official confirmed death toll exceeded 7 550 people, and was expected to rise when more damage from isolated areas is counted.

In some places, people vented their anger at government representatives who had arrived to provide relief, even seizing aid trucks.

"What can the government give? They only stage a drama. Even those who lost their houses in the landslide in Sindupalchowk have yet to receive the relief promised by the government," Shrestha said.

"We hear on the news that aid is pouring in, but we have no hope from our government. We have to rebuild on our own."

There is little confidence in politicians in Nepal, which has been plagued for years with unstable politics and is currently without an elected government due to wrangling over a new constitution.

Prime Minister Sushil Koirala said on Tuesday that relief efforts were picking up, but acknowledged a severe lack of key resources.

"We are doing our best with the resources that we have. The relief effort is gradual," he said.

Read more on:    nepal earthquake  |  nepal

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