Maputo — Mozambique's relief agency, the National Disaster Management Institute (INGC) on Sunday began moving families living in dangerous areas on the banks of the Save river, threatened with flooding caused by torrential rains in neighbouring Zimbabwe.
The level of the river at Vila Franca de Save, in Inhambane province, was measured at 6.02 metres on Sunday morning, well above the flood alert level, which is 5.5 metres.
The waters surging down the Save are threatening to inundate Nova Mambone, the capital of Govuro district. Fearing the worst, over 400 households from the Nova Mambone neighbourhoods of Musassa and Massanga, planned to leave their homes on Sunday, reports the Maputo daily “Noticias”.
The INGC regional delegate, Cesar Tembe, said conditions were being established in neighbourhoods on higher ground, and thus regarded as safe, to accommodate people leaving their houses. The INGC has also set up large tents in secure areas of the district capital.
“The flood warning for Nova Mambone remains in force”, said Tembe. “The district level Emergency Operational Centre (COE) has been strengthened with material and human resources for rescue and assistance operations. At any moment the Save river could burst its banks and cause damage”.
The INGC has stationed six motor boats at Nova Mambone, a further ten tents that can each shelter ten people, 100 sheets of tarpaulin, 500 litres of fuel, shelter kits and 15 tonnes of assorted produce.
Tembe said the COE teams are on the ground urging local communities in Govuro to abandon the area.
On the northern bank of the Save, the administrator of Machaze district, in Manica province, Fernando Samuel, said the river is threatening three localities, and 21 households have been evacuated.
In Machanga, in the neighbouring province of Sofala, over 2,500 people in Javane locality are isolated from Machanga town, and about 200 hectares of crops have been inundated.