25 April 2019

South Africa: Deadly KZN Floods Bring Tales of Tragedy and Sorrow

analysis

At least 51 people are dead in the devastating storms that have swept KwaZulu-Natal and the Eastern Cape, leaving a swathe of destruction in their wake. But in a high election season, and amid the grieving, some politicians still couldn't resist using the occasion to slip in some electioneering.

A family of three, including a pregnant woman, died in the early hours of Wednesday, 24 April 2019, when their informal dwelling in the Clare Estate, Reservoir Hills informal settlement collapsed on top of them. They were one of a number of families in the area affected by the torrential rains in KwaZulu Natal.

The aftermath of the storm claimed the lives of 51 people, with some still unaccounted for, according to the KZN Co-operative Governance Department. There is still no estimate of how many people have been displaced by the floods. Officials say that there had been more than 300ml rain in 48 hours, and many residents were unprepared for the intensity of the deluge.

Ntombenhle Mthethwa drove to Reservoir Hills, Durban from eMpangeni to make funeral arrangements for her niece, who died during the storm on 22 April 2019. (Photo: Aisha Abdool Karim)

Ntombenhle Mthethwa drove from eMpangeni to...

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