South Africa

KwaZulu-Natal floods: Death toll rises to 59, Ramaphosa to visit

The number of people who have been confirmed dead following the devastating downpours in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) has risen to 59, Premier Sihle Zikalala’s office has said.

The death toll from the floods had been sitting at 45, but 14 other people in areas like Ndwedwe and Kwadukuza have also lost their lives. Zikalala, members of his cabinet as well as mayors and councilors visited a number of areas affected by the floods.

They also paid their respects to the families of those who have died as a result of the flooding.

The premier met with his executive and received a number of reports on the disaster incidents, the effects of disaster response and interventions from the Provincial Inter-Ministerial Committee on Disaster Management, which was chaired by COGTA MEC Sipho Hlomuka.

According to the premier, the municipalities affected most by the floods include Uthukela, uMgungundlovu, King Cetshwayo, Ugu, Ilembe and Umzinyathi.

“Undoubtedly billions of rand worth of damage has been caused to homes, places of work, roads, bridges, electricity and water supply, and other critical government infrastructure. None of our districts have been spared, but the EThekwini Metro has been the epicentre of this disaster with most of the rain and the worst damage,” he also said.

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Meanwhile President Cyril Ramaphosa is also expected to pay a visit to KwaZulu-Natal, where he will be assessing the extent of damage, something which the premier took note of. Zikalala has lauded national government for its response to the floods.

“The province is encouraged by the urgent and positive response of the President and the indications that its request for disaster declaration will be received positively by national government”

“Declaring a state of disaster will enable the province to apply for emergency funding from National Treasury and grant authority to reprioritise our current budgets in order to address the reconstruction work necessary to bring the province back to normal”

KZN Premier Sihle Zikalala

YOU CAN ALSO READ: KZN floods: Ntuzuma cemetery desecrated as human remains exposed

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