100 Tsholotsho South families destitute after tropical storm


Pamela Shumba, Senior Reporter
MORE than 100 families in Tsholotsho South in Matabeleland North province are in a desperate situation after they lost their properties to floods following a tropical storm which left a trail of destruction in the district.Tsholotsho was the worst affected District in the country, with more than 800 people from Tsholotsho North being evacuated to a temporary camp at Sipepa Hospital.

Tsholotsho South Member of Parliament Cde Zenzo Sibanda said the situation was dire in Skente, Mtshina and Dinyane villages.

He said the families there were assisted with tents after their homes were destroyed by floods but were not part of those who are mainly from Tsholotsho North who were moved to Sipepa camp.

The MP said the flood victims in Tsholotsho South were in need of food, blankets and warm clothing.“We managed to source tents for the families but they need clothes, food and blankets.

‘‘They remained at their homesteads, some of which collapsed after the floods.

“Some are trying to repair their homesteads but others don’t have the money to do so. We’re approaching winter now and the tents might not be warm enough for them,” said Cde Sibanda.

He said through well-wishers and the local Civil Protection Unit, he has managed to donate food to the flood victims, but appealed for more donations.

Cde Sibanda said most of the affected families had agreed to be moved to a new area where they would be safe from floods.

He appealed to the Government to assist villagers to acquire birth certificates and identity documents as most of them did not have the documents.
Tsholotsho District Administrator Ms Gladys Zizhou said although the flood victims in Tsholotsho South have been assisted, they still needed food and more blankets.
“The Government has given a helping hand to the villagers affected by floods in some parts of Tsholotsho South, which include Dinyane, Skente and Mtshina. We’re however, appealing for more donations from well wishers. Others need building material to repair their homes,” said Ms Zizhou.
The Government is in the process of relocating more than 230 families housed at the temporary camp in Sipepa to a new site that has been identified by the Tsholotsho Rural District Council.
Vice President Phelekezela Mphoko on Monday launched a $200 million domestic and international appeal for humanitarian assistance for flood victims.
The appeal followed a declaration of the floods as a state of national disaster by President Mugabe.
VP Mphoko said the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe would handle funds from donors to ensure transparency.
He said 1 985 people were left homeless and 2 579 homesteads were damaged in varying degrees while 246 people died and                                               more than 100 people were injured as a results of floods.
Finance and Economic Development Minister Patrick Chinamasa said the Government would raise $35 million to assist the flood victims as part of its response to the disaster.—@pamelashumba1.

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