Bogor Landslide Victims Reluctant to Return Home

Following the landslide that hit Sinar Harapan Hamlet, the residents have been deeply traumatized and afraid to return home. They choose to stay in evacuation sites and hope for a relocation.

Bogor Landslide Victims Reluctant to Return Home' photo
The landslide blocked the access in and out of Sukajaya Village in Cigudeg Subdistrict, Bogor Regency. (ACTNews)

ACTNews, BOGOR REGENCY - While carrying her one-year-old child, Wulan stood in front of the evacuation camp, Sunday (1/5). She was trying to talk to her youngest child to cheer him up. They were among the victims of the landslide in Sibentang Hamlet, Jayaraharja Village, Sukajaya Subdistrict, Bogor Regency. Wulan’s youngest children had been suffering from fever for four days. His body temperature had gone up.

Wulan and her children were among the evacuees seeking shelter on one of the rice fields which was spared from landslides. They stay inside a makeshift tent made of tarpaulins. There were no carpets that covered the base of the tent. There were only gunny mats that get wets during rain.

"The tent is not large. There are over 100 evacuees here just from one village, so it is really cramped. We can’t do anything about it," Wulan explained.

They really had no choice. Now, the village from which they came has been deserted because they are too afraid of the subsequent landslides. The soil in the village has been cracked, unstable, and prone to collapse when heavy rains hit.

Sinar Harapan Village that was hit by a landslide on Monday (1/6). Three people are still declared missing. (ACTNews / Eko Ramdani)

Wulan admitted that she was reluctant to return to Sibentang Hamlet. She hoped for a relocation because her home village was prone to disasters. "I no longer want to go back there (to Sibentang)," said Wulan to ACTNews, Sunday (1/5).

Asep, a resident of Sinar Harapan Hamlet, Harkat Jaya Village, Sukajaya, also felt the same. His house was also hit by the landslide that was caused by a collapsing hill behind the village. The landslide not only destroyed houses but also killed some of the locals. Some residents were also reported missing. 

"My family and I don't seem to want to live there (in Sinar Harapan) anymore," said Asep, who works as a merchant in Jakarta, Monday (1/6). He couldn't decide whether to return home or not.

Until now, evacuees have been swarming the evacuation sites. They left their houses, leaving SInar Harapan Hamlet deserted and quiet a week after the disaster.

Now, they only hope for relocation. They are still too afraid to come back to their houses and choose to stay in evacuation sites. []