News / Africa

Deadly Floods Hit Mozambique

Aerial views shows a road that has been washed away by flood waters in Chokwe, Mozambique, Jan. 30, 2013.
Aerial views shows a road that has been washed away by flood waters in Chokwe, Mozambique, Jan. 30, 2013.
TEXT SIZE - +
Anita Powell
— Floods in Mozambique have killed dozens of people and displaced hundreds of thousands. 55 people have been killed so far, according to the United Nations, which said it needs at least $15 million in relief aid to replace destroyed homes and help the mass of displaced victims.
 
The southern African country, a sea outlet for nine major river systems, sees passing tropical cyclones drop heavy rains, leaving it prone to severe flooding on a regular basis. This year floods washed through the country’s north, where the Zambezi river overflowed after heavy rains, and the south, where the Limpopo River basin flooded.
 
The Mozambican government, the South African government and aid agencies are working to help the afflicted.
 
Lola Castro, coordinator for the U.N. and other aid groups in Mozambique who anticipates damages could reach $27 million, says the first priority is to assist the more than 150,000 affected or displaced, and to make sure they have food, medication and a safe place to live.
 
“The second concern is ... not only millions of [destroyed] structures like roads and dikes and irrigation systems, [but] schools, health centers and other basic social infrastructure which will be needed to be repaired," she said.
 
In the northern flood zone, reporter Jinty Jackson encountered children drinking filthy water who hadn't eaten in more than a week, and the mother of newborn baby who had been born on the roof of a home engulfed by raging floodwaters.
 
Baby Rofino was born on the night floodwaters engulfed his family's home, Guija, southern Mozambique, Jan. 31, 2013 (Jinty Jackson for VOA)Baby Rofino was born on the night floodwaters engulfed his family's home, Guija, southern Mozambique, Jan. 31, 2013 (Jinty Jackson for VOA)
x
Baby Rofino was born on the night floodwaters engulfed his family's home, Guija, southern Mozambique, Jan. 31, 2013 (Jinty Jackson for VOA)
Baby Rofino was born on the night floodwaters engulfed his family's home, Guija, southern Mozambique, Jan. 31, 2013 (Jinty Jackson for VOA)
Named Rofino, Jinty said, the four-day-old boy "was wrapped in blankets, and he was just sitting in his mother’s arms by the side of the road. And she was a bit too shy to speak, but her sister told me ... they had to escape the water, it sent them up to the roof. She started to say, ‘I’ve got pains, I’ve got pains,’ and the baby was born on the roof, during the night.”
 
In southern Mozambique, which was also hit hard by recent floods, medical aid group Doctors Without Borders established a health post in the city of Chokwe, where it is hosting some 40,000 people in temporary camps. More than 100,000 people were displaced by the floods in that area.
 
The worst Mozambique flood in recent memory happened in 2000 and left at least 700 people dead. The U.N.'s Castro says this year’s crisis shows that things are getting better. She cited improvements in the early warning system, in infrastructure and in response to such calamities.
 
“We can safely say that in the last 13 years, since the 2000 floods, there has been a huge improvement," said Castro. "[Each year] less and less people are affected by these floods and other events, because there is prevention – people have been settling in special areas which are less vulnerable. But there still is a lot that needs to be done.”
 
U.N. officials said the rainfall in January in Mozambique has been the heaviest since 2000.
 
Jinty Jackson contributed to this report from Maputo, Mozambique.

You May Like

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

John the XXIII and John Paul II will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square on April 27 More

Thailand Reacts to Plots Targeting Israelis

Authorities hope arrest of two Lebanese suspects will disrupt plot to attack young Israeli tourists More

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

'Once Upon a Forest' takes viewers deep into heart of tropical rainforest More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Churchi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
Jerome Socolovsky
April 22, 2014 4:14 PM
On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

French filmmaker Luc Jacquet won worldwide acclaim for his 2005 Academy Award-winning documentary "March of the Penguins". Now Jacquet is back with a new film that takes movie-goers deep into the heart of a tropical rainforest - not only to celebrate its grandeur, but to make the case for its survival. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Boston Marathon Bittersweet for Many Runners

Monday's running of the Boston Marathon was bittersweet for many of the 36,000 participants as they finished the run that was interrupted by a double bombing last year. Many gathered along the route paid respect to the four people killed as a result of two bombings near the finish line. VOA's Carolyn Presutti returned to Boston this year to follow two runners, forever changed because of the crimes.
Video

Video Pacific Rim Trade Deal Proves Elusive

With the U.S.-led war in Iraq ended and American military involvement in Afghanistan winding down, President Barack Obama has sought to pivot the country's foreign policy focus towards Asia. One aspect of that pivot is the negotiation of a free-trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations. But as Obama leaves this week on a trip to four Asian countries he has found it very difficult to complete the trade pact. VOA's Ken Bredemeier has more from Washington.
Video

Video Robotic Mission Kicks Up Lunar Dust

A robotic mission to the moon was deliberately crashed onto the lunar surface late last week, but not before scientists had collected data gathered by the spacecraft which was designed to self-destruct. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports on the preliminary findings of the craft, called LADEE - an acronym for Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer.
Video

Video Boko Haram Claims Responsibility for Bombing in Nigerian Capital

The Nigerian militant group known as Boko Haram has claimed responsibility for a bombing in the capital on April 14th that killed 75 people. In the video message, Abubakar Shekau, the man who says he ordered the bombing, says nothing about the mass abduction of more than 100 teenage girls, most of whom are still missing. Heather Murdock has more for VOA from Abuja.
Video

Video Ukraine Developments Hang Over Obama Trip to Asia

President Barack Obama's trip to Asia this week comes as concerns over Beijing's territorial ambitions are growing in the region. Those concerns have been compounded by Russia's recent actions in Ukraine and the possibility that Chinese strategists might be looking to Crimea as a model for its territorial disputes with its neighbors. VOA's Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video Autistic Adults Face Housing, Job Challenges

Many parents of children with disabilities fear for the future of their adult child. It can be difficult to find services to help adults with disabilities - physical, mental or emotional - find work or live on their own. The mother of an autistic boy set up a foundation to advocate for the estimated 1.2 million American adults with autism, a developmental disorder that causes communication difficulties and often social difficulties. VOA's Faiza Elmasry reports.
AppleAndroid