Rains of terror claims 23 lives: Parts of Malawi declared disaster areas

Government says 23 people have died whilst 12 are missing in the heavy rains in some districts in the southern region prompting President Peter Mutharika  to declare a disaster zone in the districts affexted by floods  after torrential rains .

Floods render Kamuzu Bridge on the Shire River in Chikwawa impassable.-Phto by Steve Chirombo, Mana

Some district in the south of Malawi under water
Incessant rains cause havoc as bridge is washed away

Department of Disaster and Management (Dodma) says 29 people have sustained injuries of various degrees while 22 000 are now homeless.

The districts of Chikhwawa and Nsanje have since been cut off due to the heavy rains and flooding.

Dodma says the affected districts include Phalombe, Blantyre, Chikhwawa, Nsanje, Neno, Mwanza, Zomba.

Mutharika has since cancelled his Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) activities in the north on Saturday to deal with the matter.

Presidential spokesman Mgeme Kalilani said Mutharika  will go to the disaster zone in thw South to attend ton the unfortunate situation.

Kalilani said President Mutharika is “very concerned”  with the situation and has meanwhile directed Dodma and the Ministry  of Homeland Security to “urgently mobilise and coordinate emergency relief services to those affected.”

In a statement made available to Nyasa Times, State House said President Mutharika has also directed that the Malawi Defence Force (MDF) should swiftly move in and assist those trapped and displace by the floods and the rains of terror.

Briefing journalists at Parliament Building in Lilongwe before presenting his report on disasters affecting the country, Minister of Homeland Security Nicholas Dausi  said government was already deploying army helicopters and rescue boats to Nsanje.

Mutharika  has appealed  for humanitarian assistance, from the international donor community, local organisations, faith-based relief agencies  and individuals.

Vice president Saulos Chilima has condoled the bereaved families and wished the injured quick recovery but said the government should put sound policies and measures to such disasters which happen almost every year.

Weather experts say the rains, which started on Sunday, will continue in the coming days and  flash floods .

The  Department of Climate Change and Meteorological Services (MET) director, Jolam Nkhokwe, attributed the severe weather conditions to low pressure area in Mozambique moving over to Malawi.

“The air mass has come over and we expect the rains to continue up to Saturday when the air mass will be heading back to Mozambique,”he said.

Nkhokwe said the rains could cause floods, and destroy property and endanger life.

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Mtchona
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Mtchona

These things should teach us on regulation and standard of building roads and homes. Most of Malawi roads are without proper drainage. Homes are built without state intervention on approvals. Climate change is here and it might get worse. Government must wake up. There must be a certain standard for anyone building a village home or government must help with just laying the foundation and zidina must be prohibited from being used as construction material because clearly its not, can easily collapse in times of heavy rains. Roads and bridges must be constructed by contractors with impeccable record and built… Read more »

Heavyduty
Guest
Heavyduty

My friend, this is a climate disaster and has the capacity to damage even if you build on highest standards of the world. Even in USA and other developed countries disasters still wreak havoc.

Mzika
Guest

On this issue you have decrared a disaster but why not the Albino issue? We must balance these issues guys tonsefe ndi anthu. Rest in peace to those who lost their lives.

Che Ntopeya
Guest
Che Ntopeya

Kumenekonso kuli ma albino and are being assisted likewise.

Big dance
Guest
Big dance

The albino issue is not a disaster because according to govt it hasn’t yet reached crisis levels…

Njolo mpilu
Guest
Njolo mpilu

Ma bridge amamangidwa to impress ,makaka. When will it last? Bwanji kumakwezeka mmwamba. Basi kumangophoma nde style.
Same kutsekulila toilet yopanda seat,ku cholo kuja , olo mpopi opanda concrete yake poika ndowa, rusty pipes dzulo lija. Mxiiiiiii

BigMan
Guest
BigMan

Mr President, please dont visit the disaster areas with your huge motorcade and allowances. We dont need staff to be busy focusing on you and your red carpets, gloves and polish for your gumboots.

Heavyduty
Guest
Heavyduty

I think ulibe mfundo iwe.

Babatunde
Guest
Babatunde

Ulibe ndiwe nkulu