Mozambique + 3 more

Southern Africa – Tropical Cyclone Eloise Flash Update No.12, As of 29 January 2021



  • More than 314,000 people in Mozambique have been affected by Tropical Cyclone Eloise, and this figure could rise in the days ahead as teams reach further areas hardest-hit by floods.

  • Although the ex-Eloise weather system has now dissipated, multiple areas across Southern Africa are experiencing heavy rainfall, with the risk of further flooding in the days ahead.

  • Food assistance has been distributed to 13,045 people (2,609 families) in all accommodation centres in Beira City, Mozambique, and humanitarian partners are providing other vital supplies to displaced people, including dignity kits for women and girls, in support of the Government-led response.


The ex-Eloise weather system has now dissipated. However, heavy rains continue to be reported in multiple areas of affected countries and will need to be monitored closely given that many river basins are already above alert levels and soil is waterlogged in key areas, increasing the flood-risk.

In Mozambique, the number of people affected by Tropical Storm Eloise has risen to 314,369, with a significant increase reported in Buzi District, according to the National Institute for Disaster Risk Management and Risk Reduction’s (INGD) preliminary data as of 28 January. New satellite imagery analysis released by UNOSAT/UNITAR highlights damages to houses and agricultural land caused by flooding along the Buzi river, with the northern and eastern parts of Villa Arriage appearing highly affected.

At least 20,012 people are still seeking shelter in 31 temporary accommodation centres (30 in Sofala; 1 in Inhambane), a slight decrease from 27 January, when there were 32 centres hosting 20,167 people. At least 29,310 houses have been destroyed (17,738), damaged (8,565) or flooded (3,007), mainly in Sofala Province. At least 579 classrooms and 86 health centres will need repairs. These figures could rise in the days ahead as assessment teams reach additional areas.

Significant rainfall was recorded in the past 24 hours, especially in the river basins of the Save (Massangena 83.3 mm); Buzi (Espungabera 148.7 mm); Pungwe (Púngoè Sul 138.5 mm); and Megaruma (Megaruma 80.3 mm), according to the National Directorate of Water Resource Management (DNGRH). In the next 72 hours, river levels are predicted to rise in the Limpopo river basin (Chohwe and Sicacte rivers), while the Buzi, Pungwe and Zambezi rivers, will fluctuate, with a tendency to rise, according to DNGRH.

In Zimbabwe, moderate to locally heavy rainfall is forecast over most of the country from 29 to 30 January, according to ECHO, and there are reports of flooding in Chitungwiza, which is around 38km from the country’s capital, Harare. While the widespread and heavy rainfall across the country in recent weeks has resulted in favourable water availability for crops and livestock, it is also causing extensive soil leaching and waterlogging, among other challenges, which could impact on potential crop yields, according to FEWSNET.

In South Africa, heavy rains continue in multiple locations. Orange warnings for disruptive rainfall are in place for southern and eastern Mpumalanga, Gauteng and the western Bushveld of Limpopo, as well as north-eastern North-West Province, while yellow warning alerts are in place for eastern and central Free State and eastern North-West Province, according to the South Africa Weather System. The Acting KwaZulu-Natal Transport, Community Safety and Liaison Member of the Executive Committee (MEC), Kwazi Mshengu, has said that reports have been received of severe damage to roads and bridges in Zululand, Umkhanyakude and King Cetshwayo District Municipalities and that a team has been dispatched to assess the damage. In Limpopo Province, an assessment conducted by social workers, community development practitioners and other government officials identified 78 families affected by localized floods, the majority in Vhembe District, in the Thulamela, Collins Chabane, Musina, Makhado and Greater Letaba local municipalities.


UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
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