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 .
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.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :