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September 05, 2013

South Sudan Floods Destroy Homes, Health Center

Heavy rains last week destroyed at least 70 homes and the only health center in Raja County in Western Bahr el Ghazal state, relief workers said this week as they struggled to help victims of the flooding.

The health center that was flooded served more than 350 families, and Raja County Commissioner Hassan Jalaab Khadaam said the county does not have the money to repair it.

South Sudan Red Cross state chairman Leon Archangelo said no one died in the flooding a week ago on Tuesday, but warned that families without shelter faced an increased risk of disease, especially malaria, which is transmitted by mosquitoes that breed in stagnant water.

The Red Cross has provided temporary shelter to families made homeless by the flooding, but was limited in how far its help would stretch.

“Frankly speaking, the donations we have are not enough, based on the reality on the ground," Archangelo said.

"We gave them only shelter assistance. But in general these people might need food items because their farms will not produce the products that they were expecting or some of the farms will not produce at all," he said.

Relief crews have been working to make the roads leading to the county passable again, so that trucks can carry aid to the area without getting bogged down, officials said.