Malawi Floods: Chakwera appeals for support


President Lazarus Chakwera visited flood victims in the Lower Shire where he appealed to the international community to assist Malawi recover from the damage caused by the floods

Chakwera boarded a plane which flew over the affected areas. From the plane, the Malawi leader observed the damage caused by floods induced by Tropical Storm Ana. He then travelled by road to Thabwa camp where he met victims.

Chakwera addressed flood victims at Thabwa Camp in Chikwawa where he said that, from what he observed, the Lower Shire turned into a lake due to the floods. He noted that the floods have disrupted various services and have damaged crops and property.

Chakwera during the visit

He said his government will see to it that everyone affected by this natural disaster receives proper care and support so that they can revert to normal life.

“The biggest task is reconstruction. We will make sure that in the budget to be presented in Parliament over the coming weeks, there should be money for reconstruction,” said Chakwera.

The Malawi leader then appealed to donors and international organizations to assist Malawi in recovery efforts, saying Malawi cannot do it alone.  He also asked people and organizations in the country to help those affected by the floods.

Speaking during the event, a traditional leader, Chief Milima, thanked various organizations for their assistance but he asked for more support saying they want to go back to the fields and replant crops.

One of the people affected by the floods, Jonathan Ngozo, said floods hit the area on January 17 causing devastating damage.

Road cut off by Floods

He added that there are 782 affected people who are currently living at Thabwa camp but there are expectations that the number will keep on increasing since houses in the village are still collapsing.

According to Ngozo, people at the camp include children, elderly persons and pregnant women.

“They have lost everything including crops. We have been assisted by several organizations but we are asking for support in form of fertilizer and seeds so that we should replant.  With your coming, we are hopeful that we will be assisted,” he said.

Commissioner for Department of Disaster Management Affairs Charles Kalemba said there was water in most of the district after the floods such that people were people were sleeping on roads.

He also noted that relief operations have been hampered by cut offs on some roads and for relief items to be carried from a truck to another section of a road, they are being charged K200,000.

“As it is, the flood waters have dried in many areas but people cannot go back to their villages since their houses have collapsed. So, we will continue with relief operations with our partners,” said Kalemba.

Districts highly affected by the floods include Chikwawa, Nsanje, Mulanje, Zomba, Dedza, Mangochi and Mchinji. According to DODMA, 32 people have died due to the floods.

Tropical Storm ANA: Death toll in Malawi rises to 32