One person dies in Karonga floods

By Andrew Mkonda

One person has been confirmed dead while hundreds of households have been left homeless following the floods that occurred Saturday night in several areas of Karonga district.

Confirming the incident on Monday, Karonga Police Spokesperson, Enock Livason identified the deceased as Happy Mwalwimba, 46, who drowned on Sunday night in an attempt to cross Mwangwawira Stream, in company of friends.

“We heard that he went for drinking on the other side of the stream. He met his fate on his way back. Post-mortem conducted by medical personnel revealed that death was due to suffocation secondary to drowning,” he said.

Karonga District has been receiving heavy rains for the past one week causing main rivers including North Rukuru to flood.

“It is very sad that we have lost a life of a person due to floods. A life of a person is special, so it is painful to lose it like that,” Livason said.

Acting Disaster Officer for Karonga, Victor Phiri said over 450 households in the district have been displaced due to flooding of North Rukuru River.

He said affected people are seeking shelter in four camps that have been created in the district.

Phiri said the most affected villages are Kambitoto, Mwanjera, Mwangolera, Mukupa, Mbwefu, Kafikisira and Katunga.

“We are experiencing a very pathetic situation. Some houses are completely damaged and their property, food and other materials have been destroyed,” he said.

Phiri expressed fear that this year the district may experience a lot of damage of property due to floods, saying the disasters in the district mainly happens from the month of February to April.

A visit by Malawi News Agency (Mana) and District Disaster Response Coordinating Committee discovered that apart from houses, the floods have also affected some crops and livestock whereby two cattle are reportedly dead.

Phiri called on government and other well-wishers to assist the affected people with food items, plastic papers, tents and kitchen utensils.

Karonga district is one of the districts in the country that is prone to disasters such as floods.

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