10,529 people in camps following floods in Nkhotakota


Over 10,500 people are in 11 camps in Nkhotakota District after their homes were damaged due to floods.

This was revealed yesterday when the Minister of Health Khumbize Kandodo Chiponda together with the ministry’s partners toured the camps to see the extent of damage caused by floods and how people are living in camps in as far as health issues are concerned.

Speaking at Ngala camp in Dwangwa which is having close to 2000 people, the Minister of Health said they came to appreciate the environment in camps but also to check what the Ministry can do to support them, so that they should prevent themselves from different diseases as the camps are already congested and it is very easy for some diseases to spread.

According to Chiponda, wherever there is a group of people there are always health hazards and there is always risks that something can happen and as a Ministry they have to make sure that the people in these camps are being assisted.

“We have children, we have others who take medication for different diseases, but maybe because they had to run away, the medicine has been washed away, the health passport has been washed away. So, we have teams in each camp, each camp has got a team of clinicians, Nurses and HSAs just to provide health services. We are providing all the health services, we are providing vaccination for the kids we are providing ART clinics for those who are on ART and all other services needed here,” said Chiponda.

The Minister also noted that they are providing services for malaria because when people are in such camps the risks are high to get malaria.

In terms of food, the Minister said there is enough food in all the camps and as Government they will make sure that these people don’t stay without food.

As one way of preventing malaria cases in the camps, the Minister and his team brought 4000 mosquito nets which are going to be distributed in each camp.

She also disclosed that the Ministry has set some special services which will be required in the camps and this is to make sure everyone including pregnant women receive the services at the camp and they have doctors who are camping in the camps to do the job.

Chiponda also noted that Government through the department of disaster management is working on recovery process to make sure that people who are in camps go back to their villages and they should not stay in camps for a long time.

In his remarks, Member of Parliament for the area Henry Chimunthu Banda thanked Government for the support it has rendered to the people affected but he pleaded for more support for these people even when they go back in their villages.

“We are grateful that in terms of food, there is fairly good amount but there are challenges like lack of mosquito nets, water unavailability and toilets. Those are some of the areas that are not adequately provided for. There are also small things like firewood and lighting when its dark. So, while we have a very essential products, the small items are still needed,” said Banda.

Luka Ntata who is the Chairman of Lunga Camp said what they need now are tents because the tents they have are not enough and also they need some food and other basic needs to sustain their lives in the camps.