Masvingo — The Civil Protection Unit has started moving anti-malaria drugs and food aid to thousands of flood victims in southern Chikombedzi, who were cut-off from the rest of the country after Runde and Mwenezi Rivers flooded, submerging major access bridges. Donor organisations are also providing assistance in the form of temporary shelter such as tents to areas ravaged by floods, particularly Matibi 2 and Malipati, where an outbreak of malaria reportedly claimed over 20 people at the peak of the floods.
Movement of critical drugs to fight malaria and food relief to flood victims in southern Chikombedzi became almost impossible after flooded Runde River submerged the Chilonga Bridge that connects the district's commercial capital of Chiredzi with southern Chikombedzi.
The Mwenezi River Bridge that links Chikombedzi with border-lying areas such as Dhavata, Malipati, Makanani and Sengwe communal lands was also damaged and in urgent need of repair.
Acting Chiredzi district administrator and local head of the Civil Protection Unit Mr Ndeya Nyede yesterday said food aid and anti-malaria drugs had been moved to flood-stricken areas after water levels subsided.
He said drugs and food were being moved through Mateke Hills to southern Chikombedzi.
"Though Chilonga Bridge is still submerged and impassable, we managed to get an alternative route to move drugs and food aid to flood-stricken areas in southern Chikombedzi via Mupapa and Mateke Hills," he said.
"The situation is no longer precarious in the affected areas because all the clinics in southern Chikombedzi recently received fresh stocks of drugs to fight malaria while food aid is now being transported as the flood threat continues to recede."