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The Mozambican government is currently assisting 26,000 households sheltering in the 143 accommodation centres set up in the wake of cyclone Idai and the subsequent floods in the central provinces, according to the official government spokesperson, the Deputy Minister of Culture and Tourism, Ana Comoana.
Speaking to reporters after Tuesday’s meeting of the Council of Minsters (Cabinet), Comoana said that the natural disasters in central Mozambique have affected 158,585 households, which corresponds to 794,035 people, of whom 6,663 are regarded as vulnerable.
She said that 3,143 classrooms were destroyed by the cyclone, affecting 90,756 pupils. Despite the damage, classes resumed on Monday. The schools have received additional support to replace what was destroyed in the floods. But it is not yet enough. 300,000 school books have been replaced in the affected areas, but 700,000 are needed.
The disaster destroyed 36,747 houses, said Comoana, and damaged a further 19,735. A further 15,784 houses, though structurally sound are flooded.
The floods swamped 474,154 hectares of crops. Comoana said that seeds are now being distributed to rural producers to allow them to replant.
She announced that the search and rescue missions using aircraft are in their final phase, since the levels of water are falling in the flooded river basins.
This is certainly true in Buzi district, where the level of the Buzi river has fallen sharply and people are now returning to Buzi town. But Comoana’s optimism is contradicted by the fact that the Pungoe river remains above flood level, threatening large areas of Nhamatanda district, north of Beira.
She said that the Cahora Bassa dam on the Zambezi has increased its discharges to 3,200 cubic metres of water a second, but this has not yet caused any serious problems for people living along the banks of the river.
Hundreds of kilometres to the south, well away from the flooded area, there has been a slight rise in the level of the Pequenos Libombos dam, which is critical for the supply of drinking water to the Greater Maputo Metropolitan Area.
Comoana said the Pequenos Libombos reservoir is now 28 per cent full. While an improvement on the situation earlier in the year, it is not enough to lift the current restrictions on water supply in Maputo and Matola cities, and Boane town.Source: AIM
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