Days of heavy rain caused destructive floods in the district of Rufiji in the Pwani region, eastern Tanzania– sweeping away at least 3 500 residential properties and 6 600 ha (16 309 acres) of farmland, an official reported on Tuesday, March 17, 2020.
The worst-affected villages are Muhoro, Shela, Ikwiriri, Umwe, and Chumbi. No fatalities and injuries were reported, but thousands of properties were damaged. According to local media, at least 3 500 houses were swept away by flooding.
Furthermore, 6 600 ha (16 309 acres) of farms were ravaged in the district after the Rufiji river broke its banks. With this, there are fears that the damage to crops and farmland may lead to food shortage.
In addition to damages, the harsh weather resulted as well in power outages in some areas, including Mohoro.
Coast regional commissioner Evarist Ndikilo said hundreds of affected residents were being accommodated in evacuation shelters and schools.
Moreover, the coast region defense and security committee, headed by Ndikilo himself, had also visited the affected areas, as well as communicated with the victims.
"Most of the residents in the district are worried by an impending food shortage to be caused by the devastation of their farms," he said.
Shirika la Umeme Tanzania (TANESCO) limelazimika kuondoa huduma ya umeme kwa muda kuepusha maafa zaidi kwa wakazi zaidi ya 12,000 na mali zao katika kata ya Muhoro Wilayani Rufiji waliokumbwa na janga la mafuriko. pic.twitter.com/4bOLsdMeLO
— Clouds Media (@CloudsMediaLive) March 17, 2020
Regional authorities were also conducting arrangements to allocate the victims with new plots at a site owned by the state-run Tanzania Forest Services Agency.
The Tanzania Meteorological Authority (TMA) warned citizens that rains will continue across the country over the following days.
Featured image credit: Evarist Ndikilo
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