Mozambique + 2 more

Southern Africa: IRIN News Briefs, 8 March

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SOUTH AFRICA: Border with Botswana reopens
The Stockpoort border post between South Africa and Botswana was reopened to light traffic on Wednesday, three weeks after the Limpopo river burst its banks, media reports said.

The post is now one of only two border points between South Africa and its northern neighbours that are open.

The reports added that only vehicles lighter than 2,000 mt will be allowed to cross the bridge at Stockpoort, and only at a speed of 20 km per hour. The Groblersbrug, Zanzibar, Platjan, Pontdrift and Pafuri border gates remain closed, added the reports.

MOZAMBIQUE: Tanzania donates maize

Tanzania is to donate 1,000 mt of maize to victims of the devastating floods in Mozambique, news reports said.

"The Tanzanian government has decided to donate the food as a gesture of solidarity with the people of Mozambique," a foreign ministry statement said. Tanzania, one of the world's most impoverished countries, has suffered a shortage of the staple maize crop for the last three years. The food aid to Mozambique will come from the national food stocks.

At the same time, the Kenyan government has also reportedly contributed US $75,000 to the UN World Food Programme's (WFP) emergency operation in flood-stricken Mozambique.

Kenya's President Daniel arap Moi presented his country's donation on Tuesday, the agency said in a statement. "We appreciate the Kenyan government's contribution at a time when Kenya itself is confronted with the dire effects of drought in large parts of the country," the agency added.

ZIMBABWE: Floods hit cotton farmers

Zimbabwean cotton growers have lost more than US $3.9 million worth of cotton due to flooding that hit the eastern and southern parts of the country, 'The Herald' reported on Wednesday.

Those affected include large-scale commercial and small-scale farmers and the Agricultural and Rural Development Authority (ARDA), the newspaper added. At Middle Save, where more than 500 hectares of cotton had been affected, the loss is estimated at US $700,000

According to the reports, preliminary assessments show that ARDA has lost about US $1 million worth of equipment and cotton, while the cost of repairing equipment is estimated at US $260,000.

[ENDS]

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