Tuesday, January 04, 2005

When the sun set on December 26

When the sun set on December 26, most people of Male' were aware that the islands of the Maldives were not in a very fine condition. Several tourists had been brought to Male' to treat injuries. There were reports from resorts that the tsunami had hit the resorts and caused damages. There was no contact with some of the resorts. What was most troubling was the fact that most islands of the Maldives could not be reached by telephone.

Male' is a congested capital city with just a kilometer in length. Among its 80,000 plus residents are about 20,000 expatriates and scores of people from islands who came to the capital for better education, healthcare and jobs. For these people there was no means of communicating with their relatives in the islands. These people became quite upset and restless.

The government created a Task Force and based it in Iskandhar School. People flocked there to get some news of their loved ones. Tables were set up to issue news of different atolls. But with the communications breakdown there was simply no news from most atolls.

Whatever news that came from nearby islands confirmed that the people were affected by the tsunami and they were in need of food and clothing. People volunteered in numbers to offer clothing. Aid from volunteers were being collected at Iskandhar School and Aminiyya School.

by: niOS


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