Flood victims count losses

RESIDENTS from Duncan Village, Mzamomhle near Gonubie and Ilitha township near King William’s Town were the worst affected by the heavy rains at the weekend .

FLOODED SHACK: Nontathu Bota negotiates her way from her mother’s shack in Mzamomhle. The shack is totally surrounded by water after heavy rain throughout the weekend, forcing the elderly lady to move in with her daughter Picture: MARK ANDREWS
FLOODED SHACK: Nontathu Bota negotiates her way from her mother’s shack in Mzamomhle. The shack is totally surrounded by water after heavy rain throughout the weekend, forcing the elderly lady to move in with her daughter Picture: MARK ANDREWS

In Mzamomhle Nontathu Bota and her mother and three children had to flee their shack after it was flooded.
“We managed to save our bed and we are now living in our neighbour’s shack, as we have nowhere to go now,” said Botha.
Buffalo City Metro spokesperson Thandy Matebese said more than 100 people in Mzamomhle informal settlement had been affected by the flooding.
In Duncan Village, ward councillor Mlandeli Mateke said 62 homes had been affected.
“These shacks were built on the flood line so most of them w ere completely covered by water,” he said.
Ward 1 councillor Mongezi Ngcaba said that the families affected by the floods were the same families who were the rightful owners of RDP houses in Reeston, which are being illegally occupied.
Matebese said disaster management assisted with blankets and food parcels organised through the department of social development.
In East London, a woman believed to be in her twenties was rescued on Sunday afternoon from her vehicle in Nahoon Valley Park.
Richard Hallgren said he was driving down Bridle Path Road with his son Tyler when they came across a large body of water.
“We then noticed the young lady, her car in the middle of the puddle and she was standing at the back of her sedan,” he said.
“She was waving for help, and looking terrified so we stopped to help her out. ”
They managed to assist her to safety and the vehicle was towed away.
In Mthatha, about 250 Mthatha residents living in Slovo Park had to be evacuated from their flooded homes during heavy rains over the weekend.
They were accommodated at a local church after 67 houses collapsed and 40 were under water.

In Mt Frere, police spokeswoman Edith Mjoko said two schoolgirls from Little Flower High School drowned after they tried to cross a river about 5km from their boarding school on Sunday morning.

This means the known death toll from flood-related incidents remains at eight after police retracted a statement claiming that two bodies were recovered from a car with four occupants that was washed away in Ngqeleni. Police said all four occupants had survived.

In Port St Johns raging flood waters over the weekend washed away five bridges, cutting off access to several villages .

The damage to the Ntafufu bridge – which connects villages to the R61 between Port St Johns and Lusikisiki – left pupils, teachers, nurses and other villagers stranded.

Stranded villager Sanele Swelindawo, who works for a construction company , said they needed government to fix the bridge urgently.
“I can’t go to work and it’s no work no pay for me ,” he said.
Meanwhile 150 families evacuated on Sunday morning from the surrounding area were still sheltering at schools and a church in Port St Johns.

Local government spokesman Mvusiwekhaya Sicwetsha said sunny skies and warmer temperatures had been forecast for the entire province, which would make it easier for relief and disaster management teams to clean up. — ziphon@dispatch.co.za / aphiwed@dispatch.co.za / lulamilef@dispatch.co.za

5 COMMENTS

  1. In our area (Xhora Mouth Admin Area) we had 42 homes collapse out of a total of 500 households. That’s almost 10% of households! This statistic should be roughly the same across all Trankei villages. The question is: if 10% of houses in East London or Cape Town collapsed on one day – would this not be called a disaster? At the moment this event is being treated like some normal rain storm when in fact the government should be mobilising disaster funds to assist the poorest of the poor who suffered in this catastrophe. Once again, the rural poor are shown to be unimportant to the powers that be! We had 400mm of rain in 30 hours – that is an unprecedented flood. Please, we need to take this disaster seriously!

  2. If people stop building illegal shacks in low laying arears, they would have less chance of being washed away. These same people will rebuild in exactly the same spot as soon as the area dries up and next time it rains, they will cry again.
    Dave Martin- It is unlikely that 10% of the homes in East London will collapse because they are not shacks!!
    Shacks are the preferred home, because it costs nothing to put it up, you do not pay rates and taxes, you have free electricity and if it falls down or burns, it is easy to re-construct.
    When RDP homes are given to people, they either rent them out or strip them for material to build shacks!!

    • Tronn, have you ever been to the Transkei? We don’t have shacks here. I am talking about people’s huts built with mud bricks at their own expense.

    • Tronn, you talk like these people have a choice. Its quite obviously if they were capable to move they would have done that because they can afford it. These are people who have nothing, the shacks you talk that way off are all they have and their homes. Some people actually do appreciate RDP houses

      Dave is right, government should take action for things like these cause they have been happening for years.

  3. Tronn, you talk like these people have a choice. Its quite obviously if they were capable to move they would have done that because they can afford it. These are people who have nothing, the shacks you talk that way off are all they have and their homes. Some people actually do appreciate RDP houses

    Dave is right, government should take action for things like these cause they have been happening for years.

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