Zambezi rising, more rain forecast for flooded Mozambique
"The river was still going up on the weekend at Caia and Morromeu," said Isabelle Ramos, the representative of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs in Sofala, the region worst hit by the flooding.
Ramos earlier warned: "If it rains more in neighbouring countries it may kill many people who do not believe they need to be evacuated. We need to convince people to be rescued."
Caia, located on high ground, is the operational base for relief work in the Zambezi valley.
Morromeu, near the Zambezi delta, has been turned into an island by the floods. The town of some 30,000 people is roughly one metre above the Zambezi.
The Pungwe River further west is again at high-flood level, according to the Mozambican Department of Water Affairs.
The department stated in a report at the weekend that the two biggest dams on the Zambezi were continuing to release water.
The Cabora-Bossa Dam is releasing an average of 8.4 million litres of water per second, while the Kariba Dam is discharging at about half that rate.
"The Zambezi River has been in flood since mid-February, and the situation is expected to continue in the coming days," a statement from the water department said.
Showers and thunderstorms are forecast for northern Mozambique, Malawi and Zambia during the next week.
The tropical cyclone Dera has missed Mozambique and is expected to stay clear of the African mainland in its southward path.
Now that the cyclone is no longer a threat, rescue workers from the South African Defence Force may soon leave, according to Colonel Hugh Paine.
He said the river levels appeared to be under control judging from a surveillance flight over the Zambezi on Sunday.
The Mozambique governments' Institute for Disaster Management estimates that this year's floods have killed at least 77 people, displaced about 89,000 and affected up to 490,000.
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Received by NewsEdge Insight: 03/11/2001 11:09:18
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