Abdulmenam Al Gaizi, until now mayor, was suspended a few days ago by the Government of Benghazi (east) pending the conclusion of a judicial investigation into the disaster that occurred in this location, reported the Efe agency.
According to Libyan authorities, it is estimated that 11,300 people have died and another 10,000 are missing, and Al Gaizi said that the death toll could reach 20,000.
Thousands of citizens of Derna gathered in Martyrs’ Square, in the center, and called for the removal of the President of Parliament, Aquila Salah, who they accuse of hindering the country’s unification process after twelve years of conflict.
Political division has further complicated rescue and reconstruction efforts in this country of seven million people, immersed in more than a decade of conflict since the NATO-backed Arab Spring uprising toppled autocratic ruler Moammar Gaddafi in 2011.
Two opposing authorities share executive power: the Government of National Unity (GNU) and the Government of Benghazi, elected by Parliament and under the control of Haftar, led by Osama Hammad.
According to critics, the House of Representatives, located in Tobruk, only met three days after floods devastated the northeast of the country last Sunday, especially Derna, where two dams collapsed, releasing 33 million liters of water overnight and dragging entire residential areas, bridges and roads into the sea.
The tension in this coastal city, which had 120,000 inhabitants, occurred hours after the United Nations drastically reduced the number of victims of the cyclone, from 11,300 to 4,000.
The interim leader of the Derna municipal council, Ahmed Amdrud, announced today three measures to address the situation: the reconstruction of the city by specialized foreign companies, the hiring of consultants to determine the viability of the dams and the offer of a housing subsidy to victims.
The preliminary results of the investigation opened this Thursday by the Public Ministry into the collapse of the dams point to human failures after the appearance of the first cracks in 1999 and the lack of maintenance for decades, and according to the UN, if the disaster had been avoided, the number number of victims would be drastically lower.
The United Nations Support Mission in Libya today warned of an outbreak of disease in the country, which could create “a second devastating crisis”, with reports of the spread of diarrhea.
Read Also: UN estimates the number of children affected by the floods in Libya at 300 thousand
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