South African President Cyril Ramaphosa has declared a national state of disaster in response to the widespread flooding in seven of the country’s nine provinces. The flood has affected Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, the Northern Cape, and North West Provinces, with Mpumalanga and the Eastern Cape being the most affected.
According to Reuters, the Presidency, under the 2002 National Disaster Management Act has the power to declare a crisis a National State of Disaster if existing legislation cannot adequately deal with the problem.
SAnews reports that the Presidency on Monday said “the National Disaster Management Centre has received reports from flooded homes, vehicles swept away by floodwaters and overflowing dams and sewerage facilities, to the loss of basic infrastructure and damage to roads, bridges and a Limpopo hospital.”
“In agriculture, farmers have suffered crop and livestock losses, and anticipate further losses as the South African Weather Service predicts that current heavy rains will persist…Forecast indicates that this weather pattern will remain in this state during the mid-summer months.”
The South African Police Service and the South African National Defense force may be called on to help respond to the flooding, said the presidency. The Centre continues to monitor the situation and respond accordingly. The South African Weather Service also continues to give early warnings on weather forecasts.
A National State of Disaster was also declared by President Ramaphosa last week over South Africa’s power crisis due its effect on the country’s economy.
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