Mon | Nov 29, 2021

‘Incredibly difficult’ to reach cyclone survivors

Published:Wednesday | May 1, 2019 | 12:00 AM
Children play in a waterway in Pemba city on the northeastern coast of Mozambique yesterday.
An aerial view of houses submerged in water in Pemba city on the northeastern coast of Mozambique yesterday. Rains continued to pound Pemba and surrounding areas causing massive flooding and destruction.
An aerial view of houses submerged in water in Pemba city on the northeastern coast of Mozambique. Rains continued to pound Pemba and surrounding areas yesterday causing massive flooding and destruction.
This photo taken on Wednesday, April 29 and supplied by World Food Programme (WFP), shows the Miaze River flowing over the road near Pemba, Mozambique, in the aftermath of Cyclone Kenneth. Rains continued to pound Pemba and surrounding areas yesterday causing massive flooding and destruction.
An aerial view of houses submerged in water in Pemba city on the northeastern coast of Mozambique yesterday.
Children cross a flooded section in a neighbourhood of Pemba city on the northeastern coast of Mozambique yesterday.
A deserted verandah is seen submerged in water in Pemba city on the northeastern coast of Mozambique yesterday.
A vehicle is seen submerged in water in Pemba city on the northeastern coast of Mozambique yesterday.
A flooded neighbourhood is seen in Pemba city on the northeastern coast of Mozambique, Tuesday, April 30, 2019. Rains continued to pound Pemba and surrounding areas on Tuesday causing massive flooding and destruction.(AP Photo/Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi)
An aerial view of houses submerged in water in Pemba city on the northeastern coast of Mozambique, Tuesday, April, 30, 2019. Rains continued to pound Pemba and surrounding areas on Tuesday causing massive flooding and destruction. (AP Photo/Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi)
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PEMBA (AP):

Rains were still pounding parts of northern Mozambique yesterday, several days after Cyclone Kenneth, while the United Nations said aid workers faced “an incredibly difficult situation” in reaching thousands of survivors. The death toll rose to 41, the government said.

United Nations (UN) humanitarian spokeswoman Gemma Connell said bad weather kept badly needed supplies from arriving in the main city of Pemba on Monday. This will be a challenge in the rainy days ahead, she told The Associated Press.

The government again urged Pemba residents to flee to higher ground as flooding continued. More than 22 inches (55 centimetres) of rain have fallen in Pemba since Kenneth made landfall last Thursday, just six weeks after Cyclone Idai tore into central Mozambique.

This is the first time two cyclones have struck the southern African nation in a single season, and Kenneth was the first cyclone recorded so far north in Mozambique in the modern era of satellite imaging.

RAIN FORECAST

Up to three inches of rain were forecast over the next 24 hours, and rivers in the region were expected to reach flood peak by Thursday, the UN humanitarian office said, citing a United Kingdom aid analysis. It is the end of the rainy season and rivers already were high.

Scores of thousands of people in Macomia and Quissanga districts north of Pemba and on Ibo island need food and shelter. About 35,000 buildings and homes were partly or fully destroyed, the government said. At least three bridges had collapsed, stranding some communities.

“These people lost everything,” Connell said. “It is critical that we get them the food that they need to survive.” Women and children have been the hardest hit “without the basics that they need to get by,” especially shelter, she said.