Mozambique - Floods OCHA Situation Report No. 16

Situation Report
Originally published
Ref: OCHA/GVA-2000/0050
OCHA Situation Report No. 16
Mozambique - Floods
10 March 2000


1. The water levels of the Umbeluzi (Maputo province), the Save (Inhambane province), the Buzi, the Gorongosa (Sofala province), the Pungoe (Sofala and Manhica provinces) and the River Licungo (Zambezia province) continue to drop. A slight rise of the Incomàti River was registered at Ressano Garcia (Maputo province). The Limpopo basin remains in a state of emergency. In the Zambeze River basin (Sofala, Manhica and Zambezia provinces), no flooding has been reported.

2. Heavy rains were registered on 9 March and this morning, which hindered air relief operations. However, the weather is improving and helicopters and light aircraft have resumed its delivery of humanitarian relief items.

3. On 7 March, the Special Humanitarian Envoy of the UN Secretary-General travelled with the WFP Deputy-Executive Director, to Macia, Chiquelane, Chokwe and Chibuto. The camps at Macia, Chicualane and Chibuto were reported to be organized and managed by district authorities with the support of UN agencies and NGOs. The main needs identified were for safe water, tents, plastic sheeting, blankets, medicines, cooking utensils, access to education to children and seeds and tools in light of the second planting season in April (para 12 refers).

4. Despite the slower reduction of water levels along the Limpopo River, displaced families have started to return home. However, local authorities have warned returning populations of health and flood risks. Priorities are to ensure access to safe water, adequate sanitary conditions and medicaments, and provision of shelter and food aid for the returned.

5. The Prime Minister of Mozambique visited Beira on 8 March. Representatives from the Ministry of Defense are expected to join the United States CMOC teams in Maputo and Beira to assist coordination of air operations.

6. Armed Forces from Belgium, Britain, France, Germany and South Africa are participating in the relief operations in the Limpopo basin. On 8 March, a total of 129.75 tons of food were delivered, 210 relief personnel were transported to the field to assist in distribution of relief items and 29 injured persons were evacuated.

7. The third UN Disaster Assessment and Coordination (UNDAC) Team members arrived in Maputo on 10 March. Their mission will over-lap with the current UNDAC Team for a few days to ensure an effective hand over and continuity of the work. The Team is led by a senior OCHA staff member and is composed of emergency management experts provided by the Governments of Denmark, Finland and Sweden. OCHA's head of Desk for Africa is also scheduled to arrive in Maputo on 11 March, in view of plans by the UN in country team to update its Inter-Agency Appeal launched on 23 February.

8. OCHA flew over the Limpopo river up to Mabalane today, following unconfirmed reports of persons in need of rescue and/or assistance. The area was badly devastated by flooding. However, there was no evidence of any families in need of relief assistance. Previous attempts to fly over the area on 9 March were unsuccessful due to severely bad weather.

9. Food: Assessment and monitoring of the requirements along the Save and Búzi Rivers, and in the Masangena and Mabalane areas is continuing with the assistance of Government and NGO partners. WFP was able to send a truckload of food by road to Macia on 8 March. Another two loads were dispatched on 9 March, with a total of 20 tons. It is expected that these two trucks will continue to make this trip every day. WFP is pre-positioning food in the Zambeze/Chinde River delta area as a contingency against possible flooding in that area. They are also finalising a distribution plan for 100,000 pots, pans and other cooking utensils in camps and among other affected populations.

10. Health:

Cases are being reported of acute malnutrition and dehydration amongst children under five, in addition to malaria.

11. Water/Sanitation: On this coming weekend, a team comprising representatives from the National Directorate for Water (DNA), GTZ (Germany) and Care International will be travelling to Govuro, Mabote, Pande, Nova Mambone and Save to carry out evaluations of the water supply in these locations. They are planning to examine around 63 wells and boreholes.

12. Infrastructure: The following roads remain closed: Baxia de Chicumbane, Tica - Búzi, Muxungué - Save, Maluvane - Nova Mambone, Zona de Ripembe, Zona de Muari, Bandua - Machanga and Gorongosa - Chemba.

13. Shelter/Accommodation Centres/Non-Food Items: According to the list of accommodation centres being compiled by the shelter group, 87 centres are currently operational. There are plans to visit these accommodation centres to draw up a list of existing stocks and the most urgent needs. The following report was received from the field on selected camps visited:

Chacalane Camp, Chókwè:There are an estimated 30,000+ people in this camp. Water supplies are sufficient, although the lack of logistical capacity to distribute food has been observed. UNICEF and WFP are distributing BP5 High-Energy Biscuits through women's groups to all children under 5 years old and to pregnant women. The spontaneous reunion (i.e. not through a formal reunification system) of 58 unaccompanied children with their families was registered. 52 children still remain separated from their parents. The most urgent need is for tents or plastic sheeting.

Wenela Camp, Chibuto: There are now only 420 people in this camp (compared to 5,193 people on 04/03/2000). Of these, 25 are unaccompanied children. There have been 120 cases of diarrhoea, 13 cases of TB, and 9 cases of malaria. The most urgent needs are for shelter, clean water, food and cooking equipment.

Koka-Missava, Chibuto:There are still 1,850 people at this camp. There have been 200 cases of diarrhoea, 65 cases of malaria, and 45 cases of TB. The most urgent needs are for food and water, as they have not received food for six days. They also require blankets, cooking utensils, jerry cans, shovels and antiseptic soap.

Eduardo Mondlane, Chibuto:There are around 300 people spread over a fairly wide area around the village of Eduardo Mondlane. There is a high risk of malaria, and the site urgently needs chloroquine and insect repellent. They also require food supplies.

Giga, Chibuto:There are over 400 people at this camp. Many people are reported to be suffering from dehydration and require immediate assistance in terms of food, water and shelter supplies.

International response

14. WFP has launched an appeal for USD 27 million to continue its operations in Mozambique in addition to some USD 3 million to support continued helicopter operations by the South African National Defence Force. This appeal is for provision of food aid for some 650,000 people for six months.

15. Information on contributions is often reaching OCHA from multiple sources. Therefore, in order to avoid duplications/omissions and subsequently to allow for accurate contribution tracking and coordination, donors are strongly urged to verify the contributions and inform OCHA Geneva of corrections/additions as required, using the form provided.

16. OCHA is prepared to serve as a channel for cash contributions for the immediate relief needs. Funds channelled through OCHA will be spent in co-ordination with the relevant organisations of the UN system and OCHA will provide written confirmation of their use. Funds should be transferred to OCHA Account No. CO-590.160.1 SWIFT-code UBSWCHZ12A - at the UBS AG, PO Box 2770, CH-1211 Geneva 2, Switzerland, with reference: OCHA - Mozambique - Floods 2000.

17. For co-ordination purposes, donors are requested to inform OCHA Geneva, as indicated below, of relief missions, pledges or contributions and their corresponding value by item.

18. Any future updates on contributions to this disaster may be found by clicking on Financial Tracking at the top of the page for this disaster on the OCHA Internet Website ( Donors are requested to verify this table and inform OCHA Geneva of corrections/additions/values. Donors are encouraged to notify OCHA Geneva of their contributions to this disaster using the OCHA Standardized Contributions Recording Format, available electronically in the above mentioned Financial Tracking Website.

19. This Situation Report and further information on ongoing emergencies are 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 (OCHA Disaster Response Branch):Ms. K. Toll-Velasquez /Ms. Y. Sawada, direct Tel. +41 -22 917 1107/ +41-22-917 1768

Press contact: Mr. Donato Kiniger-Passigli, direct Tel. +41-22-917 26 53

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
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