Deadly Flooding in Southern Africa Continues as Region Reels from Cyclone Idai
The full devastation of the storm is still being discovered as international rescue efforts continue.
The death toll is now in the hundreds in the aftermath of Cyclone Idai, which hit parts of Southern Africa late last week. So far the official death toll in Mozambique has reached 200, and 98 in neighboring Zimbabwe, according to Al Jazeera.Numbers are expected to rise as many people are still reported missing.
Mozambique's President Filipe Nyusi says that the catastrophe may have killed up to 1,000 people in the country. Citizens in Malawi were also affected.
Many survivors of the disaster are seeking safety, shelter and basic resources as the flooding has destroyed homes, roads and public buildings. The devastating effects of the cyclone are being felt by many and the full effects are still being discovered. The destruction has left hundreds of thousands of children in the region at risk, according to an eye-witness BBC Africa report and millions have been affected by severe flooding.
The UN has called Cyclone Idai, "the worst weather disaster to ever hit the Southern Hemisphere."
Earlier this week, South African President Cyril Ramaphosadeployed the military to assist Mozambique with rescue efforts. The Zimbabwean government has reportedly raised 18 million UDS to rebuild roads, provide water and sanitation as well as restore communication lines and electricity.
Rescue efforts have been compromised in remote areas, where rescue crews say homes have been submerged, possibly trapping people inside.
The response from the international community has been widespread, as major institutions such as the Red Cross and UNICEF continue to assess the damage and send workers to affected areas. Some Mozambicans, however, are questioning the government's efforts and are critical of what they believe was a lack of preventative measures the government could have taken to lessen the destruction caused.
Many have shared their support for the victims of Cyclone Idai online, and are seeking out ways to lend further support to victims of the disaster.