Following the landslide which claimed the lives of 42 persons in Bafoussam this week, Shifu Ismail N, a senior medical student while condoling with the bereaved, cautions people on the dangers of inhabiting disaster risk zones in a poem.
Titled HOMES IN DANGEROUS MILIEUX, the 54 lines write up which introduces each verse with rhetoric lines carefully engulfs the readers attention with some listens on the risks involved in settling in disaster prone zones.
Why inhabiting a volcanic zone?
Where there are active volcanos,
With frequent eruptions devastating the arena,
Where magma exudes and larva pours down
On neighbouring environs,
Destabilizing the ecosystem,
Humans, animals and plants terrified and dispersed,
Settlement disrupted, properties destroyed
What an insecure zone ? what a niche ?
Though a region of fertile volcanic soil,
Rich in soil nutrients, good for plantation
But the consequences of inhabiting are unendurable .
Its high time we quit the neighbourhood.
Why inhabiting river banks?,
Where floods are frequent during rainy periods,
With runoffs engorging the rivers,
Excess overflowing its banks,
Sweeping across settlements nearby,
Leading to material and human losses.
Though cheap in habitation and close to water source,
But the consequences are uncalled for.
It’s high time we quit the arena.
Why inhabiting thick forested and bushy areas?
Which can serve but as game reserves and parks,
Infested by wild and dangerous fauna,
With dangerous and poisonous snakes ;
Mambas, cobras, vipers, pythons, anacondas and so…
Lions , leopards, tigers, elephants,…
Dangerous creatures that are unfriendly,
And pose threats to human life.
Also infested by disease-causing arthropods;
Mosquitoes, tsetse flies.
Though good for farming and hunting activities,
But the impacts on man so devastating,
It’s high time we quit the environs.
Why inhabiting wild bushy lands?
Which are predisposed to wildfires during dry periods,
As wicked and mass destructive as they’re,
Consuming huge properties, houses, harvests,
Threatening even human lives.
Though good for agro-activities,
But one can’t bear these demerits.
It’s high time we quit these lands!
Why inhabiting a slopy terrain,
Where the soils are loosely unstable,
Predisposing to natural disasters;
Like landslide and rockfall.
With multitude of lives claimed,
Pains and agony lingering,
Owing to the angry and gruesome unpredictable occurrence.
It’s high time we stop housing òn these lands!
By Shifu Ismail N _*.(the scientific poet)*_