UN says 1.85 million people affected by Cyclone Idai in Mozambique

UN says 1.85 million people affected by Cyclone Idai in Mozambique. Photo : Citizen TV

Johannesburg, South Africa (ADV) – The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) on Tuesday disclosed that about 1.85 million people have now been affected by Cyclone Idai and its aftermath in Mozambique alone, African Daily Voice can confirm.

This comes after the aid workers raced to fathom the scale of the disaster and determine what help is most urgently needed.

“Some will be in critical, life threatening situations. Some will sadly have lost their livelihoods, which whilst an appalling tragedy is not immediately life threatening,” said OCHA coordinator Sebastian Rhodes Stampa.

According to OCHA, Idai flattened homes and provoked widespread flooding when it made landfall near the Mozambique port city of Beira on March 14. It then ripped through neighbouring Zimbabwe and Malawi.

At least 686 people have been killed by the storm and its aftermath across the three countries, a figure that could rise as relief workers prepare for what they say are inevitable outbreaks of diseases including malaria and cholera.

Mozambique remains the hardest hit by the humanitarian crisis with tens of thousands of homes destroyed and hundreds of thousands displaced across an area of some 3,000 square km – roughly the size of Luxembourg.

“We can determine the size, we can’t determine the circumstance. So we’re now going out on the ground, dropping people off from helicopters to determine what the critical needs are,” Stampa said.

© Bur-jhb – M.C – African Daily Voice (ADV) – Follow us on Twitter : @ADVinfo_eng