It is a disgrace for the country, and for the supposedly responsible government, that six months after the deadly flooding tragedy of Mandra, the area is reliving the same nightmare, and nobody cares.
Extreme weather conditions cannot constantly be the explanation so as to indifferently paper over the irresponsibility.
Fortunately, this time there was only material damage. Yet, it is tragic for a city to drown, and to close the national highway, and not to attribute any responsibility to anyone.
It is even worse for the regional prefect, Rena Dourou, to say that the anti-flooding works that have not yet commenced, are “proceeding at a record pace by Greek standards and we are a hair’s breadth from signing with the contractor”.
Instead of apologising to the residents, who before recovering from the wounds of the previous disaster are faced with new ills, the prefect is playing with their pain. Instead of working overtime, to make up for the negligence of the state mechanism, Ms Dourou is offering long-distance lessons.
In any well-ruled state, after such a disaster, everyone would have mobilised to avert a new tragedy. Our irresponsible officials, however, invoke the bureaucracy as an alibi. While everyone knows that the situation there, with all the illegal building, is a perpetual threat, they are moving at the pace of a pushcart.
Indeed, we are living in an era of unforeseeable weather conditions. Yet, that is not an alibi. It should have led to a general alertness. Emergency situations demand emergency measures.
If the complex web of legislation were the problem, officials should have sought solutions in a timely manner. Even if anti-flooding works were to begin today in the area, it is certain that by winter there would have been minimal progress.
Unfortunately, for the government, the priority is not to protect citizens, especially those in downgraded areas, for whom they are supposedly fighting.
It is preoccupied with opportunistic games, aiming at staying in power a bit longer.