By Judy Jesoro Rotich

 Saboto Cesar, the Minister of Agriculture of St. Vincent and Grennadines has been sharing on social media exclusive images and video of the devastating hurricane that devasated his country and much of the Carribean.

Saboto Caesar, the Minister of Agriculture of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines toured areas devastated from the hurricane and in an exclusive video shared with Zenger News, he says that there was great destruction of plantains and bananas in the country as a result of the passage of Hurricane Beryl. Hurricane Beryl’s impact reached nearly everyone in Grenada and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. An estimated 200,000 people, the combined populations of both islands, were affected by the storm.

Early this week, Hurricane Beryl, the first major hurricane of the season, carved a destructive path through the central Caribbean Sea. The hurricane formed rapidly in the Atlantic on June 28th, reaching a devastating Category 4 by the time it slammed into Carriacou, Grenada on July 1st with the island suffering extensive damage. It thereafter hit St. Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) hard, particularly the Union Island that is home to roughly 3,000 people. One fatality has been reported in the aftermath of the most powerful hurricanes to hit the region since Hurricane Maria in 2017.

The government of St. Vincent has reported that 90% of houses in Union Island were severely damaged or destroyed by Beryl’s powerful winds. While Union Island bore the brunt, hundreds of homes across St. Vincent also suffered significant damage, including government buildings and churches.

“The reports that I have received indicate that 90% of the houses have been severely damaged or destroyed,” said the Prime Minister, Ralph Gonsalves.

Across St Vincent and the Grenadines, Grenada, and St Lucia, thousands remain without power and have been forced to seek refuge in temporary shelters. Social media paints a grim picture, flooded with images of shattered homes and residents sifting through debris for what they can salvage.

Hurricane Beryl is intensifying as it barrels through the southeastern Caribbean, warns the National Hurricane Center (NHC). Jamaica braces for a potential Wednesday afternoon battering by life-threatening winds and storm surge. The hurricane casts a shadow over Haiti and the Dominican Republic before hitting Jamaica.

              “Hurricane Beryl is the earliest category five storm in the Atlantic ever recorded, forming much earlier in the hurricane season than usual,” said the NHC.