14ymedio, Natalia López Moya, Havana, 15 December 2023 – After the dearth of any official information or warnings prior to last weekend’s heavy rains, the Cuban authorities have been under pressure to put out warnings that this coming Saturday and Sunday there will be storms in the west of the country, and especially in Havana. In the capital, flooded after several days of rain, and with rubbish bins overflowing, residents were trying to prepare themselves, on Friday, for several coming days of being confined indoors.
In Central Havana one can see evidence of the continuous rainfall of the last few days. People queued outside bakeries, food ration stores and state-run shops that sell the so-called “free modules” which offered only detergent, vegetable oil, cigarettes and chicken picadillo. People have to get the rest of their provisions on the informal market or from private shops, at extremely higher prices.
In Plaza de Carlos III, the biggest shopping centre in the neighbourhood, the queue stretched right around the corner and one could see the desperation on the faces of many of those who were waiting. “They say things are going to get ugly”, one elderly woman feared as she waited to buy her family’s module, which is also called a “combo”. The institute of meteorology has forecast heavy coastal rain, with possibly very intense rainfall, for the weekend.
People have been becoming more worried as the morning has progressed: many fear that the city is defenceless in the face of any inclement climate effect. “All that rubbish which has accumulated over there, there’