Tanzania’s flash floods kill 13 and leaves 15,000 homeless~ Officials

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Tanzania has seen an increase in climate-related threats over the last decade. Now, Tanzanian city dwellers – many who have migrated from rural to urban landscapes - are starting to experience these threats, that were previously only associated with rural living, affecting their day-to-day lives. Image courtesy: Humanitarian Photographer Daniel Hayduk
FILE PHOTO: Tanzania has seen an increase in climate-related threats over the last decade. Image courtesy: Humanitarian Photographer Daniel Hayduk

At least 13 people have been killed and 15,096 others have been left homeless by flash floods that swept 16 villages in Tanzania’s southern district of Kilwa in Lindi region, an official said on Saturday.

Christopher Ngubiagai, Kilwa district commissioner, said the floods caused by ongoing torrential rains also damaged tens of hundreds of hectares of farmland and killed livestock.

“The floods that occurred from Jan. 26 have left people in the 16 villages in devastating shock,” he told Xinhua in a telephone interview, adding that the district authorities have created four centers that were sheltering 8,000 people who have been made homeless.

Ngubiagai said the remaining 7,096 people were being accommodated by their relatives and friends. Kilwa district has a total of 90 villages, he added.

The official appealed to individuals, businessmen and organizations to donate relief supplies, including food, water, medicines, tents, blankets, mattresses and clothing to the victims.

He said the Kilwa district authorities were now counting the loss in the 16 villages to establish the exact number of houses that have been demolished by the floods, the number of destroyed hectares of farms, the number of killed livestock and damage on the infrastructure, including schools, dispensaries and roads.

Reports from northwest district of Magu in Mwanza region said 152 people were left homeless after 89 houses were demolished by floods on Friday.

Safia Jongo, Mwanza region acting police commander said all the victims were rescued and moved to safer areas.

On Sunday, the Tanzania Meteorological Authority issued its latest weather outlook warning of looming heavy rains in more than 10 regions across the east African country.

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