Over 1,000 people have been left destitute in Mzuzu City after a hailstorm destroyed 204 houses on Sunday.
Mzuzu City Council Disaster Desk Officer, Precious Mandala, said yesterday that the disaster has also left one person, identified as Bonnex Munthali, injured.
He said the council is yet to send the assessment report to the Department of Disaster Management Affairs (DoDMA) for proper support, adding that the council has nothing in its account to support the victims.
“The rains came with strong winds and they lasted for less than one hour but destroyed many houses,” Mandala said.
Mzuzu is not the only place to be affected by heavy rains and strong winds this year. Rumphi and Karonga districts are have also been hit by the natural disasters.
“Currently, we do not have support as we always depend on Dodma. The assessment report will be sent soon because we are yet to conclude [assessing the damage],” Mandala said.
When we visited some of the affected townships on Monday, we found some victims complaining about hunger.
Munthali, who sustained injuries on the left leg, said he has been assisted by his neighbour, adding that he has been told by the ward councillor that the council will not establish camps for such victims for fear of cholera outbreak in the city.
“I was taking my lunch and then I heard heavy winds accompanied by light rains. Within 10 minutes, the winds blew the roof of my house and bricks started falling down on me. I ran away and injured my left leg. I do not have anything to eat as I rely on my neighbour for support,” said Munthali, one of the victims.
Mzuzu City Council Deputy Mayor, Alexander Mwakikunga, said victims need support from well-wishers and the government.
“People need food, tents and other [forms of] support. The government and other well-wishers should come in immediately. We are stuck because the council cannot help the victims because we are already struggling financially,” Mwakikunga said.
The disasters have affected 17 houses in Townships of Masasa,, 23 in Zolozolo, 16 in Mchengautuba West, 73 in East, nine in Lubinga, two in Katawa, 27 in Chiputula, 31 in Songwe and six in Chibanja.
Dodma officials were not available for a comment but responsible minister, who is also Vice-President Saulos Chilima, said recently that the government has enough resources to support disaster victims in the country.
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