Severe floods and landslides in DRC: Over 420 fatalities and 5 000 missing

dr congo sar may 2023

In a devastating set of natural disasters, severe floods and a landslide have led to significant loss of life and extensive damage in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).

The calamities, triggered by heavy rainfall from May 2 to 4 across the Kalehe Territory in South-Kivu Province (eastern DRC), have resulted in at least 422 confirmed fatalities, with the death toll expected to rise in the coming days.

Around 5 000 people are currently unaccounted for, and an estimated 20 000 individuals have been affected by the disaster.

Additionally, approximately 3 000 houses have suffered damage due to the floods, with 1 200 of these destroyed entirely. The disaster has also impacted the region’s education system, as three primary schools and one secondary school have been inundated by the floods.

Just a few days after the flooding, on May 8, a landslide in the Songambele locality near Rubaya City in Masisi Territory, North Kivu Province, which borders South-Kivu Province, resulted in around 100 people being trapped under debris.

Humanitarian partners are actively participating in the emergency response to aid those affected by these disasters. However, the situation remains critical as moderate to heavy rainfall is forecast for the two affected provinces over the next 24 hours, which may exacerbate the already dire situation.

References:

1  Democratic Republic of the Congo – Floods, flash floods and landslide, update – DG ECHO – May 10, 2023

Featured image credit: Al Jazeera (stillshot)

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