Flooding in Malawi and Mozambique had affected nearly 843,000 people and caused at least 60 deaths as of 11 March, according to preliminary reports from the respective Governments. In Malawi, nearly 739,800 people have been impacted, according to the Government, with 45 deaths and 577 injuries recorded. More than 75,900 people are estimated to be displaced, with many ad hoc camps established and people living out in the open as their houses have been destroyed. Rapid needs assessments are ongoing in the areas hardest-hit by rains and flooding to verify initial estimates regarding the number of people affected and determine the number of people in need of immediate humanitarian assistance. In Mozambique, more than 103,100 people have been affected (more than 48,000 people in Zambezia, more than 51,200 in Tete and nearly 3,900 in Niassa), with 15 deaths recorded. Nearly 17,100 people are estimated to be displaced in Zambezia, Tete and Niassa, who are sheltering in 15 transit centres, and nearly 12,500 houses are reported to have been destroyed. Nearly 85,000 hectares of crops have been flooded, affecting more than 57,800 smallholder farmers. The water level is expected to rise in the next three days and may surpass the alert level in the Licungo, Zambeze, Pungoe and Buzi river basins.
The Malawian and Mozambican governments are leading humanitarian responses in their respective countries, supported by humanitarian partners. In Malawi, humanitarian response, search and rescue efforts and rapid needs assessments are underway, and the Government has appealed for support in terms of provision of emergency relief items, including tents, food, medicines and helicopters for rescue operations and delivery of assistance. In Mozambique, authorities report needs related to food, water, shelter, education, seeds and health. The Government and partners are providing assistance to affected people. However, access has been damaging due to extensive damage to roads. The National Institute of Disaster Management in Mozambique estimates a funding requirement of about US$18 million for food and non-food items, and an additional $13.9 million for emergency road work in Zambezia (where 31 per cent of the road network has been damaged) and Cabo Delgado (50 per cent of the road network damaged).
Tropical Cyclone Idai, which formed over the Northern Mozambique Channel on 9 March, is expected to make landfall near Beira on 14 or 15 March. The cyclone was located over the Mozambique Channel on 12 March and is expected to strengthen into intense tropical cyclone status (Category 4 equivalent) again prior to making landfall. Nearly 1.6 million people are estimated to live in areas that could be impacted by high wind speeds (>120km/h), according to the latest analysis from UNOSAT. After landfall, Cyclone Idai is expected to track inland, bringing heavy rain to central Mozambique and potentially into eastern Zimbabwe. The latest projections indicate that Idai may then turn back east and re-enter the Mozambique Channel, potentially going on to impact southern Madagascar.
- UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
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