(by Andegna) At least 50 people have died and dozens more are said to be missing in a giant landslide at Ethiopia’s old rubbish dump in Addis Ababa. The death toll has been confirmed by officials on Monday as relatives are waiting for news of other missing.
Dozens of homes of squatters who lived in the Koshe landfill site, on the outskirts of the capital, were flattened when the largest pile of rubbish collapsed on Saturday. It was not clear what caused Saturday night's collapse, though residents have said the dumping of trash had resumed there in recent months after protests at a newer Sendafa Sanitary Landfill.
Koshe, whose name means “dirt” in local slang, was closed last year by city authorities who asked people to move to a new dump site outside Addis Ababa. But the community there did not want the landfill, and so the garbage collectors moved back. Last year, farmers in Sendafa Landfill, the new waste disposal and recycling centre of the city, refused to allow garbage to be dumped in the area. A tragedy squatters living there blamed on a biogas plant being built nearby.
Many of the victims were squatters who scavenged for a living in the 30-hectare dump, officials said. Hundreds of waste-pickers work at the landfill every day, and others find cheap housing there. Many of the mud-and-stick houses were buried under the rubble, and dozens of people so far have received medical treatment, it was learned from the nearby ALERT Hospital where the injured have been taken.
Image: The Telegraph