The Department of Disaster Management Affairs (DoDMA) on Saturday provided relief assistance to households affected by floods at Dwangwa and also started evacuating 150 families trapped on an island.
The relief items include 300 bags of maize flour weighing 25kg each, 30 bags of beans weighing 50kg each, 15 bags of salt weighing 20kg each and 15 family tents.
Speaking when he made a symbolic presentation of the relief items, DoDMA’s Chief Relief and Rehabilitation Officer Fyawupi Mwafongo said the department has responded to the critical needs of the affected people as per the preliminary needs assessment report submitted by the Nkhotakota District Council.
“So far, a total of 903 households have been affected, of which 338 have been displaced in Nkhotakota District. They [displaced families] have sought refuge in their relations’ houses and in four camps set by the [Nkhotakota] District Council.
The council is still conducting assessments to establish the extent of damage and as a department, we will reach out to all the affected people as per the final needs assessment report from the council,” said Mwafongo.
He added that out of the 338 displaced families, 150 were trapped around Kakuyu Farming Island and they were being evacuated to safer places by boats, as of Saturday.
Mwafongo then urged people living in flood-prone areas to move to safer places and take heed of flood early warning messages.
Member of Parliament for Nkhotakota North Henry Chimunthu Banda, whose area has been severely affected by the floods, commended government for rendering untiring support to the affected people.
“I wish to register my profound gratitude to government for the quick response interventions made. Officials from the district council have been with us throughout and today, DoDMA has timely responded to our calls for food and shelter materials,” said Chimunthu Banda.
The flooding occurred following the swelling of Dwangwa River, as a result of prolonged heavy rains. No deaths or injuries were registered.