Death toll from floods triples to 176, says Malawi VP

Malawi vice president Saulos Chilima says the death toll from floods triples to 176  and at least 200,000 displaced.

Chilima said the rescue operation had been hampered by poor weather in the past few days and the difficulty of finding places for helicopters to land..-Photo by Jeromy Kadewere, Nyasa Times

Chilima said the rescue operation had been hampered by poor weather in the past few days and the difficulty of finding places for helicopters to land..-Photo by Jeromy Kadewere, Nyasa Times

Thousands of people have been displaced after seeing their homes washed away

Thousands of people have been displaced after seeing their homes washed away

Chilima told a news conference in Malawi’s commercial capital Blantyre that dozens of people are still missing, with at least 153 unaccounted for in the worst affected southern parts of the country.

He said a joint operation between police and the Malawi Defence Force was under way to rescue hundreds who were trapped in their villages.

“It’s a very bad situation. I flew over some parts of the Lower Shire but we could not find anywhere to land,” he said of the southern parts of the country. “It’s a big challenge we have before us.”

President Peter Mutharika has declared 15 of the country’s 28 districts disaster areas.

Chilima, who is minister responsible for disaster and relief management, has asked for international assistance.

Rescuers are also trying to find bodies of people believed to have drowned in the Shire River. Some people have also been reluctant to leave their farms and now local elders have been tasked with ensuring everyone is taken to camps on higher, dry land.

The United Nations World Food Programme said it plans to airlift more than 100 metric tons of food to the southern African nation to feed at least 77,000 people.

Tents have been set up for those left homeless, and many have found refuge with friends and neighbours whose homes survived, according to aid organisation Doctors Without Borders.

“The floods are behaving like a slow tsunami with the river swelling progressively downstream toward the south and Mozambique,” said Amaury Gregoire, Doctors Without Borders’ mission head in Malawi.

The international medical organisation said it was concerned that displaced people were also vulnerable to water-borne disease due unsanitary conditions.

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Njolinjo
Guest

I salute you Rt Hon Chilima. You are my man. You are the first wa pa carrier kuyimba bell. I’m praying for your good health big man.

Matukuta
Guest

Inu a Chair anasiya Mpando kale kale,koma mumasungabe mangawa bwanji??why not blame Bingu?anthu openga mwapanga bwanji?

Tambwali
Guest

Sory guys though u celebrate whn northerners r in problems.

SORRY
Guest

Pepani banganya

Jas
Guest

It Is Very Sad With The Situation Our Brothers, Sisters Are Facing In Some Districts In South. May I Request Nsanje People To Understand And Take Action When Government Says Desert This Place. Iam With You In This Hard Times, May God Almighty Control The Situation In Jesus Christ Name

yale
Guest

Mr Vice President,kodi ma suit any amakusokelani ndani,komatu Ali bhoo ameneyo,zili bho mubvala bhoo ,osamavala ngati Msonda ayi

Observer
Guest
Chigonapamuhanya, your comment demonstrates your obvious lack of understanding of the geography of Malawi. It is clear that your tribalist tendencies have gotten the better of you. For your own information, the southern region and Nsanje and Chikwawa in particular are districts located within the Shire Valley meaning that they are areas of very low altitude relative to the central and northern region. Most of the nation’s rivers including the Shire and Ruo drain to this area and as a result the likelihood of flooding is very high. The choices that people have had to make to ensure their survival… Read more »
mac william shumba
Guest

Lets love one another whether from north south or center we are all one we all called Malawian

upindi upile
Guest

Dont laugh when your friends are in problems. Its sad that when Taifa market caught fire one southerner said leave that to Tumbukas to sort out. Y cant the south sort this problems on their own without government help or soundind sos? Malawi is one. All the 3 regions are interdependant. We feel sorry 4 what has happened in the south though u do celebrate when northerners r in problems.

Rev Dr. and Mrs Zeze
Guest
To the State President, Cabinet Ministers, Members of the clergy and the bereaved families, we join you in sympathising with those who have lost their beloved wives, husbands, brothers and sisters, grandparents, sons and daughters and grandchildren. It is a crucial and difficult moment for families, religious, political and church leaders socially, politically and economically. Malawi has lost people who could help to develop the country. We pray that God will comfort all the bereaved families and the greater nation. Our appeal to those of us who are living abroad, let join our friends and do something to mitigate the… Read more »
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