THE United Nations Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) has placed an estimate on the total flood damage bill to the country at $71.3 million.
A report released on April 12, OCHA in conjunction with humanitarian partners also said there were grave concerns about food security and the onset of communicable diseases in the aftermath of what many have described as the worst flood in Fiji.
According to OCHA, damage to road infrastructure tops the bill at $17,951,438 followed by agriculture at $17,416,693 and water at $11,910,000.
The sugar industry was hit with a bill of $10.53 million, housing $4,359,660, Fiji Electricity Authority $4million, education $3,188,650, works $1.18million, health $606,554 and telecommunications $152,000.
Apart from the massive flood bill caused by damages to services, employment and infrastructure, OCHA said it was most concerned about the likelihood of the spread of communicable diseases.
"As was already experienced following floods in January, a rise in communicable diseases, particularly typhoid, leptospirosis and dengue is to be expected," OCHA reported.
"Particularly given the extent of flooding, including areas covered with silt and mud, and continued disruption in urban and rural water supply, there is a high risk of disease outbreak.
"Communities with no or limited access to safe water supply are considered to be at risk," the report stated.
OCHA also commented on the devastation of crops in the agriculture sector, with particular emphasis on fruit, vegetable and root crop growers supplying the domestic market. "Given extensive agriculture damages, food security in the next three months is under pressure for many, as almost 13,000 farmers have sustained damages.
"This raises particular concern for the most vulnerable people, including children, pregnant and lactating mothers, the elderly, disabled, the poor and those that remain in evacuation centres or with host families," the report stated.