The southern and eastern parts of the South Africa have been badly affected since last weekend by heavy rains. A minimum of 51 people have been reported to be killed in the flooding in South Africa. This was released by a local official on Wednesday as President Cyril Ramaphosa flew into the deluged eastern region of the country.
“Our hearts go out particularly to families and communities who have been directly affected by death, injury and the loss of property,” Ramaphosa said in a statement after returning from crisis talks in Egypt on the situations in Libya and Sudan. “This situation calls on all of us to pull together as a country to reach out to affected communities.”
The death toll as skyrocketed from 33 on Tuesday, as rescuers continued to comb debris for those who might be trapped underneath landslides. In addition to collapsed buildings and flooded roads, sewer lines were blocked and electricity pylons had toppled over. South African military personnel have been dispatched to help rescue and evacuation efforts.
The South African Weather Services warned that more heavy rain and gale force winds were expected, which could threaten low-lying bridges and roads. “Unfortunately the numbers have risen to 51. In previous years we have tried to remove people from low-lying areas,” a regional minister, Nomusa Dube-Ncube, told SA FM radio. “We will continue with negotiations in some of the areas where we believe the long-term solution is people moving out.”