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Lightning kills 4

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By Tiyese Monjeza

The number of people that have died due to natural forces is now hovering above 23, after four people from Namalima Village, Traditional Authority Ngwelero in Zomba, died after being struck by lightning on Wednesday.

Zomba Police Station deputy spokesperson Aaron Chilala said the incident happened on Wednesday.

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“Those that have died include three family members and an unidentified man. The incident happened around noon in Namalima Village, Traditional Authority Ngwerelo, in Zomba. Three of the victims met their fate when they sought shelter in an abandoned and dilapidated building which serves as a barbershop in the village,” Chilala said.

He identified three of the people as 30-year-old Luckson William, Patricia Simon [age unknown] and 10-year-old girl Leticia Kondwani.

“The four were discovered by one of the villagers, who reported the matter to Jali Police Post. Law enforcers rushed to the scene and took them to Zomba Central Hospital,” Chilala said.

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On December 7 this year, the Department of Disaster Management Affairs (Dodma) indicated that at least 19 people had died due to stormy rains and lighting since the onset of the 2022-23 rainfall season.

Out of the deaths, lighting had killed 14 people at the time, with five people dying after walls collapsed on them.

Dodma further indicated that over 6,000 families— approximately 27,000 people— had been displaced by stormy rains and hailstorms in some districts of the country.

It further indicated that 55 people had sustained injuries.

It cited Lilongwe as the district worst hit by stormy rains, which have affected villages around Likuni and Bunda, damaging people’s property in the process.

Commissioner for Disaster Management Affairs Charles Kalemba told The Daily Times that some families are in need of assistance.

“As of December 7, out of 6,112 households, 5,036 have been assisted and the number of outstanding households to be assisted is currently at 1,076,” Kalemba said

He disclosed that, so far, they have dispatched relief items to Chikwawa District, where 373 households have been affected; Kasungu District, where natural forces have negatively affected 591 households; Mchinji District, where 551 households have been rendered destitute; Thyolo District, where the number of families in need of assistance stands at 229; Salima District (203) and; Lilongwe, where 998 households are in need of assistance.

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