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Floods death toll at 56

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By Jameson Chauluka:

South African experts have jetted in the country to assist in rescue and recovery operations as the death toll from floods has risen to 56.

The Department of Disaster Management Affairs, on its Facebook, page says 184,589 households or 922,945 people have been affected by the floods while 16,545 households, roughly 82, 725 people, have been displaced.

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“The assessment to establish the extent of the damage in all the 14 affected districts is still underway. The department continues to coordinate search and rescue operations as well as provision of relief assistance to the affected people,” reads the post in part.

Spokesperson of the seven-member South Africa team, Thulani Nzuza, said they want to help their local counterparts in assessing the extent of the damage.

“The South African Government has sent us to help assess the damage and report back so they know the type of assistance that is needed. We know this is a disaster and it should not wait many weeks before we assist,” he said.

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Dodma Principal Secretary and Commissioner of Disasters, Wilson Mollen, thanked the South African government for the assistance.

“They have come to help us in our operations. Again, when they report their findings, their government will then make an informed decision as to what we need,” he said.

Mollen pleaded with Malawians living in low lying areas of the Shire Valley, especially Chikwawa and Nsanje districts, to move upland in the wake of the warning of another heavy downpour which can spur more floods by the Department of Meteorological Services.

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