Malawi: Heavy Rains Claim Two Lives, Hundreds of Households Destitute in Mchinji

(File photo).

Mchinji — Heavy and stormy rains that fell on October 6 in Mchinji District have left two people dead and over 248 households destitute in the area of Traditional Authority Mavwere in the district.

An assessment by disaster office in the district shows over 19 villages have been affected. The violent down pour has also affected about six churches in the same area.

District Disaster Desk Officer for Mchinji, Violet Jimu said most of the affected families would require immediate assistance ranging from food items to construction materials.

"Our assessment shows that over 248 households in 19 villages in T/A Mavwere have either been completely or partially damaged."

She said: "The average damage means that the affected households have neither immediate shelter nor food to eat in the meantime as most of their food stuffs have been damaged."

Jimu further said one of the two lives lost had a brick fence fallen on him as he passed by during the stormy rains.

One of the affected households is the family of 89 years old Baziliyo and 80 year-old Beatrice Mmbala at Chigunda village.

According to Baziliyo Mmbala, the husband, so far the two have nothing left as their house got completely damaged together with their harvest.

"When the rains started, my wife Beatrice and I were inside the house, then we just heard a louder noise from the roof, then the rains started to get through the house and in no time the whole roof was blown off. So far, we have nothing left and all the flour we had got damaged," he said.

But Member of Parliament for the area (Mchinji South) Agnes Nkusa Nkhoma who is also deputy minister of agriculture has pleaded with well-wishers to help her in reaching out to the affected families.

She said so far most of the households would be looking for construction materials for resettlement and food items before the rainy season gets even tougher.

"As soon as I heard the news of the damage, I rushed to make a rough assessment myself, from what I saw, these people are in dire need of quick shelter and food items," she said.

Said Nkhoma: "Most of the food stuffs got damaged during the stormy rains. I'm therefore appealing to anyone to help us as I cannot afford to reach out to the affected families with the few resources that I have."

According to the meteorological department's weather outlook, the country is expected to receive heavy rains in the 2020/2021 rainy season

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