Orange warnings due to rain and drought

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Orange warnings due to rain and drought
Orange warnings due to rain and drought

Africa-Press – Mozambique. Mozambique’s Cabinet declared an orange alert for the whole of the country on Tuesday in response to the rainfall in the north and centre of the country and the drought in the south.

“We have had some precipitation in the north and center, but there is a great lack of rain in the south (…). We want to anticipate, in order to create conditions, both for the possibility of an increase in precipitation and for the continued scarcity of rains”, said the spokesperson for the Council of Ministers, Filimão Suaze, at the end of this body’s weekly session.

Suaze said that the declaration of the orange alert creates legal conditions for the activation of emergency operational centers at national and district level, mobilization of material, human and financial resources and intensification of public awareness, to remove areas at risk of natural disasters..

With the decision taken today, he continued, the country is avoiding a “more difficult situation”, due to the rain, in the center and north, and the drought, in the south.

At least 44 people have died in Mozambique in the current rainy season, since October, due to bad weather, of which 19 in the province of Zambézia, according to official data up to January 8 previously reported by Lusa.

According to a national balance report by the National Institute for Disaster Risk Management and Reduction (INGD), lightning was the main cause of death (28 cases) in this period, related to atmospheric conditions, followed by the collapse of walls (13) and drownings (three).

Rains and strong winds affected 4,056 families across the country during this period, totalling 19,729 people, and 49 were injured, also causing the partial destruction of 1,611 homes, while 718 were completely destroyed and 1,784 were flooded.

There are also records of 137 classrooms destroyed, 21 schools, 3,968 students and 42 teachers affected.

The bad weather also affected eight health units and nine houses of worship, also destroying 88 kilometers of roads by January 8th.

Mozambique is considered one of the countries most severely affected by climate change in the world, cyclically facing floods and tropical cyclones during the rainy season, which runs between October and April.

The 2018/2019 rainy season was one of the most severe in memory in Mozambique: 714 people died, including 648 victims of cyclones Idai and Kenneth, two of the biggest ever to hit the country.

In the first quarter of last year, intense rains and the passage of Cyclone Freddy caused 306 deaths, affected more than 1.3 million people in the country, destroyed 236 thousand homes and 3,200 classrooms, according to official Government data.

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