Madagascar - Floods OCHA Situation Report No. 1

Ref: OCHA/GVA - 2003/0016
OCHA Situation Report No. 1
Madagascar - Floods
23 January 2003

This report is based on information provided by the Office of the United Nations Resident Coordinator in Madagascar.


1. Heavy rains have been pouring down on Madagascar since the beginning of January 2003, thus resulting in flooding in many areas of the country. The most affected areas are the provinces of Antananarivo and Fianarantsoa. The Meteorological Department of Madagascar reports that precipitations recorded have already reached 550mm, which are two times the average level of rains that usually fall during the whole month. The Meteorological Department of Madagascar also reports that the downpour is expected to continue for a few more days.

2. Assessments are on-going in both provinces. On 22 January 2003, the National Relief Council reported that 20,000 people overall have been affected by the floods.

3. 13 people have died due to the collapse of houses and 2,218 people are homeless.

4. The Office of the Resident Coordinator reports that the harvest season was to begin in a few weeks in the area of Antananarivo and the losses are likely to be significant if immediate harvest is not done.


5. The following are the emergency needs identified by the authorities for the Region of Antananarivo:

  • Provision of essential relief items (such as Tents, Plastic Sheeting, Blankets, Mosquito Nets) and medicines for Malaria and Diarrhea treatment
  • Provision of water and sanitation equipment (Water Treatment Products, Water Tanks, Water Pumps)
  • Provision of equipment for road clearance
  • Provision of helicopter and/or boat services for materials transfers

The National Relief Council is in the process of quantifying the above needs and these will be publicized within the next few days.

National Response

7. On 18 January 2003, an emergency plan was launched for the city of Antananarivo.

8. On 21 January 2003, a team composed of Representatives of the National Relief Council, the Provincial and Municipal Authorities and UNDP flew by helicopter over the city of Antananarivo to assess the scale of the floods. A second aerial assessment was carried out by the Minister of Interior and Administrative Reform, the Minister of Decentralization, the Mayor of Antananarivo and the UN Resident Coordinator.

International Response

9. UNDP is supporting the coordination of the needs assessment through its project in support of disaster prevention and management.

10. WHO has provided three Emergency Health Kits to the Ministry of Health. Each kit contains drugs and supplies for basic health services for 10,000 people for three months.

11. Contact persons in Madagascar:

Bouri Sanhouidi
UN Resident Coordinator
+261 20 22 370 58 (Dir.)
+261 33 11 066 94 (Mob.)

Michel Matera
Humanitarian Affairs Officer-UNDP
+261 20 22 370 75 (Dir.)
+261 32 07 236 38 (Mob.)

12. OCHA is in close contact with the Office of the UN Resident Coordinator in Madagascar and will revert with further information, as it becomes available.

13. This situation report, together with further information on ongoing emergencies, is also available on the OCHA Internet Website at

Telephone: +41-22-917 12 34
Fax: +41-22-917 00 23

In case of emergency only: Tel. +41-22-917 20 10

Desk Officers:
Mr. J. de Meritens / Ms. F. D'Andreagiovanni
Direct Tel. +41-22-917 1934 / 1478

Press contact:
(GVA) - Ms. Elizabeth Byrs, direct Tel. +41-22-917 26 53
(N.Y.) - Ms. Stephanie Bunker, direct Tel. +1-212-963 87 40


UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
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