22 July 2020 - Source: Eleven Media Group - Although the floods caused by the broken embankment on the bank of the Ayeyawady River near Shwege Sewage Pumping Station in Amarapura Township, Mandalay Region, is now under control, the number of affected local people has reached over 13,400.
A leakage was reportedly formed at the embankment under the sluice gate while four steel pipelines with 1000 mm in diameter were being laid. The embankment breakup started on the night of July 19, and it totally collapsed at about 2.30 am on July 20.
About 6,000 people from nearby villages were evacuated on July 20. Flooding then spread to three more villages on July 21 affecting 13,421 people in 3,386 households, according to figures from the township general administration department.
"We heard of such a project (of Shwege Sewage Pumping Station) in 2017. We were concerned about that. But they neglected us. Companies started earth work," said U Aung from Hsinte village.
A local from Shwege Village also said: "The embankment collapse was caused by the recklessness of the project. It is due to their mismanagement. They are responsible for this. Now, the damage has been repaired. But I don't think the troubled people will be OK. They have to struggle with their settlement."
The flow of water from the Ayeyawady River has now been under control after repair. And authorities are trying to stop the flow completely.
Vice President Henry Van Thio visited the scene again and inspected repair work on July 21 morning.
Over 6,000 people are now staying at relief camps.
Situated in Shwege Village, the project is being implemented by Mandalay City Development Committee (MCDC).
The project started with a loan from Asian Development Bank at the place where the embankment broke up.
Mandalay Region Minister for Electricity, Energy and Construction Zarni Aung said an investigation would be launched into the incident.
According to Kyaw Hsan Myint, member of MCDC, the company based in China taking charge of the project has claimed its responsibility for the embankment collapse.
The Chinese-owned CEEC-HEPDI & CNOOD Company signed a contract worth US$5.56 million after winning the tender in 2018. The project started in December 2018.