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Citizens of Cusco Have Yet to Receive Assistance

Posted by Marco Antonio Mendoza Friday, January 29, 2010

Well as we all might have suspected the thousands of citizens of Cusco have truly suffered from the damage caused by the heavy rains and to make the situation even worse they have had to practically go it alone with almost no assistance whatsoever.  The photos below are were taken from El Comercio and were originally photographed by Daniel Nakasone Santivañez and Maricarmen Valdivieso.




All over Cusco many citizens have been greatly affected by the unanticipated torrential rains which have struck the region.  Many people have lost their homes as the humidity from all the rain has made many of their adobe (a structure or home made primarily from mud and clay) homes unstable to inhabit, those who have lost their homes are without shelter or personal belongings.  There is an outcry by the public who fell that they have been left unnoticed by the state, as help has yet to reach towns like Urubamba, Yucay, and Pacarbamba. 

It should be noted that humanitarian efforts by government run organizations have been sending aid to the affected citizens of Cusco.  For example both PRONNA (National Program of Alimentary Assistance) as well as the National Institute of Civil Defense have both been providing aid to the affected in the form of food, blankets, tarps, etc.  What is uncertain is how many citizens are actually receiving that aid.

Meanwhile, the local authorities have been hard at work trying to restore the rail system that has been either covered by rock and mud or has been totally destroyed in other parts.  The local government is in the process of sending in a replacement bridge for the one that collapsed in Ollantaytambo which is scheduled to arrive sometime tomorrow.  They also estimated that it would take approximately 30 days before the replacement bridge for Pisaq would arrive.  At first glance it would appear that the government is working hard to restore the infrastructure in the Sacred Valley region, especially since the rains have been responsible for loss of several millions of dollars in money earned through tourism.  

An estimated 25,000 citizens of Cusco have been left without homes and have lost literally everything to the horrible weather.  What is disappointing is all the support that is being rallied for the tourists who have been isolated in the town of Aguas Calientes (located at the base of Machu Picchu), while the people of Cusco have received minimal support and coverage.  It causes one to wonder just how long it will take the department of Cusco and the Peruvian government to step up their efforts in aiding those affected? 

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