Namibia: Floods DREF MDRNA010 Emergency Plan of Action Final Report



Description of the disaster

Heavy rains during the period of January-March 2017 within the Cuvelai River Basin in Angola and localized rainfalls in Oshana, Oshikoto, Ohangwena, Omusati resulted in localized flooding in Lishana (shallow flood plains). On 09 March 2017, the Hydrological Services Namibia (HSN) in the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry (MAWF) in collaboration with the Directorate of Disaster Risk Management in the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM), and Meteorological Services issued a joint statement on the looming floods. HSN further warned that the flooding situation in the Cuvelai was comparable to that of 2011, which caused major damages in houses and infrastructure and requested for contingency preparedness and activation. The Hydrological Department in Ondjiva in Angola informed HSN that flood water had reached and flooded Ondjiva, which was likely to increase water levels in Namibian Cuvelai Lishana because of heavy rainfall in the catchment area. HSN hydrological gauging stations recorded highest water levels as compared to the floods that hit the same areas in 2008, 2009 and 2011 due to heaving rains in Namibia and in the bordering areas. Through the Regional Disaster Risk Management Committees of Oshana and Omusati regions, Namibia Red Cross Society Regional staff conducted field visits to relocation camps in both regions to investigate the extent and impact of the floods. A total number of 182 Households (1,092 people) were displaced and in need of emergency assistance. Although response mainly targeted households those who relocated away from home, provision was made to extreme cases presented to the Regional Disaster Management Committees where the NRCS is a member and upon verification assistance was rendered to all affected 417 households.

In Zambezi region, the Zambezi River was flowing at 6.44m compared to 5.6m the same time last year. The Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry the 12th April 2017 confirmed that a flood wave was developing in upstream Zambia at Lukulu, and it was expected that water levels in Zambezi region would rise again. So far, the floods in Zambezi region have displaced 1410 people and this number was at risk of rising to 2,000 people as more flood waves hit Namibia from Zambia.

The floods limited the access of some communities to basic services such as health and education. Most of the schools remained inaccessible, resulting in school children and teachers having to walk through water channels to access education and health facilities in other areas. Displaced communities in relocation camps had limited access to proper accommodation, sanitation facilities, access to safe clean water, and lack of preventative items such as mosquito nets. This increased the likelihood of outbreak of diseases such as Malaria and Diarrhoea.

The major donors and partners of the DREF include the Red Cross Societies and governments of Australia, Austria, Belgium, Britain, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Monaco, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden and the USA, as well as DG ECHO, the UK Department for International Development (DFID), AECID, the Medtronic and Zurich Foundations and other corporate and private donors. On behalf of the Namibia Red Cross Society (NRCS), the IFRC would like to extend its gratitude to all partners for their generous contributions.