On 25 November the UN Country Team in Madagascar has appealed for $6 million in donations to stockpile emergency supplies, including tarpaulins, medicines and water purification tablets against the imminent cyclone season that annually devastates the island ..
The cyclone season usually starts in December and runs through April and coincides with the main growing season for rice, the main staple food crop in the country. In the last two years five cyclones struck Madagascar affecting over 463,000 people and caused widespread flooding and the destruction of thousand of hectares of farmland..
This year the cyclone season appears to have started early with two cyclones Anja in mid November and Bongani in early December bringing heavy rains in the northern tip of Madagascar. Fortunately they caused no substantial damages. A third cyclone Cleo is currently forming in the Indian Ocean and it is unclear at this stage if it will hit Madagascar and coastal Africa in its path. The situation is being closely monitored.