Page last updated at 05:32 GMT, Friday, 9 May 2008 06:32 UK

Burma voices: Rangoon's hardship

Days after Cyclone Nargis devastated parts of Burma residents in the capital Rangoon talk about their continuing struggle.

Yi, Rangoon

A man draining petrol from his car in Rangoon
Rangoon residents are coping with fuel shortages

My family is fine. We have enough food for one month. But I have to rebuild the destroyed parts of my house bit by bit. I think I will have to wait one month for this because of the dirty water under and around my house and yard. It means I can't prepare the ground for construction work

The dirty water smells bad and it is hard to breathe. We have no power but we can get a water supply from the tube well of the water seller.

There is nothing from the government for our entire ward. Most people find it difficult to get food and water daily. But Rangoon is now running public buses for transportation.

We are very worried about the delta area. We are also very angry with the wicked junta. They want to do nothing for our people.

Children's home co-ordinator, Rangoon:

We are helping one orphanage where the roof has blown away. There are 38 orphans and staff living in the rain now with no-one to help them but us.

The children also need food aid and pure drinking water.

At another girls' orphanage - the whole house has collapsed. The roofing sheet was stolen by a thief and they urgently need to rebuild the house.

I know another orphanage house has collapsed. They are rebuilding a temporary bamboo house to at least give shelter but they need food.

Many other children's homes need food aid. Most homes around Rangoon have a lot of damage.

Aung, Rangoon:

Now our military junta has declared that the cyclone struck areas have returned to normal. How can it be?

After the storm there is still no power. The authorities are giving little assistance, they are supplying a little rice but not enough for a household.

They do this to show off to the world that they are assisting the people. Buses cannot operate much because of fuel shortages. No medical teams are seen. No security is given to people during night while the whole town is blacked out.

We could only connect the internet yesterday - the rest of the day it is cut off. People have to rely on themselves. I am fine now because I am staying in a place which has its own power and water supply. But for the people in outskirts of Rangoon there is real suffering.

The water supply is still scarce; there is no power; people's houses which were destroyed by Nargis have not been repaired yet. Food prices are going up sky high, there are fuel shortages, fuel prices are going up, cooking oil prices are high and even vegetable prices are climbing.

The big stores don't dare open their doors to shoppers. Do the authorities think that the water can climb up to higher floors by itself?

The poor people struck by Nargis have nothing to eat, no money to buy anything. The junta has provided them some rice and some cooking oil. But the junta cannot provide them with roofing and housing material.

Expatriate woman, Rangoon:

Our school has been closed as many people are without water or electricity. Some families have lost windows, roofs and houses. I am amazed at how fast the streets have been cleared.

People were out in the streets with machetes, saws and brooms trying to clear the streets by Saturday afternoon. I have seen military in the main streets cutting trees that blocked roads, but have heard that many neighbourhoods have got no help.

The people here are survivors and have taken the initiative to clean up on their own. A few food stores have begun to open but I hear shelves are beginning to empty. There are few materials to repair the damage and what is around has doubled and tripled in price.


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