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Tropical Storm Gombe death toll hits six

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The number of people who have died in accidents resulting from Tropical Storm Gombe has reached six.

Department of Disaster Management Affairs (Dodma) spokesperson Chipiliro Khamula said they were still assessing the damage.

“We are waiting for teams which are in the field to give us further details of the damage which the storm has caused,” he said.

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The latest case of death was that of a two-year-old girl who was pronounced dead upon arrival at Koche Health Centre in Mangochi District after a wall collapsed on her.

The girl’s death has brought the death toll for the district to two after a 28-year-old man from the area of Traditional Authority Chowe died as he attempted to cross the flooded Lingamasa River.

The remaining four deaths are from Machinga District, where three people of the same family drowned as they attempted to cross the flooded Namandanje River while a 78-year old man died after being hit by a collapsing wall.

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In a statement, Dodma says the department deployed a search-and-rescue team comprising Malawi Defence Force and Malawi Police Service personnel to Mulanje and Phalombe districts.

According to Dodma, the rains have also destroyed the M1 Road at Bereu and Sekeni in Chikwawa District, a bridge linking Chikwawa and Nsanje districts and also disrupted operations at Muloza Police Post and Malawi Revenue Authority offices.

Meanwhile, in Mozambique, the number of people known to have died since Tropical Storm Gombe made landfall has risen to 12.

Reports indicate that the number is expected to rise because some areas in the most severely affected coastal districts of Nampula Province remain inaccessible and without communications or power.

The Department of Climate Change and Meteorological Services has said the country should expect more storms and cyclones up to April 30.

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