Malawi Congress Party (MCP) has urged government to declare “ a state of emergency” following heavy flooding in the southern African country which has killed 48 people and left another 23 000 displaced.
Addressing a news conference in the capital Lilongwe on Wednesday, MCP president Dr Lazarus Chakwera said this will enable government to get funds from other allocations to assist in the floods disaster.
“It will also enable some people and well wishers to come in and fully assist the affected people and that government will be able to move them out of their areas to safer places,” Chakwera said.
He then appealed for all Malawians to “stand together” regardless of their political affiliations to help the affected people.
“It’s very unfortunate that some people have lost their lives, yes property can be restored but when one person lose a life, it becomes a sorry state.
“Lets all stand together, handle the situation as a family so that these should pass and everything becomes normal for everyone,” he said.
President Peter Mutharika has since appealed to the international community for assistance for the impoverished country.
“The floods have affected Nsanje, Chikwawa, Phalombe, Zomba, Blantyre, Chiradzulu, Thyolo, Mulanje, Balaka, Machinga, Mangochi, Ntcheu, Salima, Rumphi and Karonga. So far, it is estimated that 13, 999 households have been displaced by the floods and 48 people have lost their lives,” Mutharika told reporters on Tuesday.
He declared the affected areas as “disaster zone.”
He added that the floods have also damaged a lot of hectares of crops, washed away livestock and damaged infrastructure such as roads and bridges.
Officials were unable to visit the affected areas due to continuing poor weather.
Mutharika said tents and food are urgently required, adding: “Rescue operations are also a priority. Donations in cash or any kind should be sent to the Secretary and Commissioner for Disaster Management Affairs, Private Bag 336, Lilongwe 3, Malawi.”
Speaking at the same briefing, Vice President Saulos Chilima said the Department of Disaster Management which is also in his office is currently setting up a call center that will be informing the media and the nation on the latest developments.
“A phone number will be given to the public, anyone seeking information can call and fact based information will be made available. We will also be organizing press conferences on daily basis to keep the media updated,” said Chilima.
Chilima further appealed to the public not to take advantage of the situation saying, donations should go directly to people that have been affected by the floods.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :