Friday 23.02.2024 ΚΕΡΚΥΡΑ

Ballos: South Corfu residents΄ patience is over

30 Jan 2023 / 22:51

CORFU. Residents and professionals held a protest on Sunday morning demanding the repair of the October 2021 storm damage, as well as flood protection works.

South Corfu residents, especially those living in Messonghi and Moraitika, are at the mercy of weather conditions, as every heavy rainfall is causing flooding. 15 months after Ballos, the damage caused has not yet been repaired, while residents are calling for permanent solutions with infrastructure works to address the serious problems at the Messonghi river.
Residents and professionals held a protest at the Messonghi bridge on Sunday morning demanding the repair of the damage caused by Ballos to the road by the river, as well as flood protection works to avoid similar phenomena in the future.
The two Struggle Committees that were set up are even planning a new protest in the near future, this time closing the whole road in Messonghi, in an attempt to make their voices heard so that the required solutions will be found.
Secured money
Although the Ionian Islands Region has secured €400,000 to complete the work on the remaining part of the road by the Messonghi river, the slow pace of the public sector does not allow the long-awaited project to be put out to tender. After many months, the study is finally mature and the tender documents are expected to be submitted to the Finance Committee for approval soon.
Not with the same frequency
However, the area continues to flood with every heavy rainfall, filling people's properties with mud. In fact, last October and November it flooded three times. As residents told Enimerosi, flooding existed in the past but not with the same frequency.
"Necessary works have not been done in the basin. It is not easy to get rid of the water. Scientists need to find what the problem is. We had flooding in the past as well, but it was every 5 or 6 years. The old Messonghi bridge in Melissa also gets filled with water. The bridge is low and narrow and thus it overflows and the water heads towards the road. That is why we request that it be replaced with an iron one. The water is also affected by the walls that people have built to protect their properties," the Messonghi Struggle Committee member and elected Chlomotiana local councillor Dimitris Avlianos told Enimerosi.
Preliminary study for the basin
The Regional Authority has started a preliminary study for the basin from Pentati to Messonghi and the announcement of its preparation is also expected to be made. According to the Deputy Regional Governor for Infrastructure and Technical Works Manolis Orphanoudakis, the study will show how far the flooding goes, as well as the works that need to be carried out to prevent the existing river from flooding.
"Tender documents are being prepared to conduct a study in Central and South Corfu's high-risk areas. A very large project will follow. It is not the Region's responsibility, but it will implement it," he said, noting that the human factor has also played a role in the flooding phenomena in the area.
"Gutters, ditches and streams have been blocked, that's why we have flooding. We saw it in last October's rain. The water was rushing down from Episkopiana and was not directed to the drainage system," he explained.
Who was present
Present at the protest were the SYRIZA-PASOK MP Alekos Avlonitis, the South Corfu Mayor Kosta Lessis, the Corfu SYRIZA-PASOK office coordinator Christos Moraitis, the head of the major minority of the Central Corfu Board Yiannis Trepeklis, the Corfu Labour Centre President Stamatis Pelais, KKE party members, Corfu Federation of Agricultural Associations members and representatives of South Corfu communities.