Cost of South African Floods Estimated as Relief Efforts Continue

Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (COGTA) Minister, Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, has noted progress made in assisting those affected by the recent floods in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN).

"Efforts should be made to work with government institutions, partners and others to reduce disaster risk and losses and to ensure safer, sustainable communities ... Even though there is progress made, there is still devastation that needs to be addressed urgently on the ground as people are looking at government for help," the Minister said.

The minister's statements come after a technical team of the United Nations (UN) already present in South Africa before the flooding visited KwaZulu-Natal to assess the damage in the parts of the province that were affected.

"We have been supporting the province following the floods in 2019 and the civil unrest of 2021. We will continue to support rebuilding efforts to ensure that no-one is left behind as part of the Memorandum of Understanding that we have in place with the provincial leadership in that province," Acting Resident Coordinator for the UN in South Africa Ayodele Odusola said in a statement.

The Gift of the Givers Foundation has also collected water at the Cape Town International Convention Centre for the flood-affected communities. "People in Cape Town wanted to show their appreciation to KZN, to the point that Cape Town became KZN," said Dr Imtiaz Sooliman, CEO of Gift of the Givers. "And the people in KZN appreciate everything that's being done; everybody is aware of what's happening here."

As repairs to the flood-affected areas continue, estimates for the restoration of the rail infrastructure alone are estimated by the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa's (PRASA) to be between between U.S.$164 million and U.S.$183 million.

Climate change has been cited as cause of the deluge; the World Health Organization has warned that climate change is now the single biggest health threat facing humanity, but scientists have agreed that the worst impacts can be avoided with coordinated and rapid climate action.

InFocus

Flood damage in Pinetown KwaZulu-Natal

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