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Moz floods: Citizens should evacuate, say authorities

AFP

Mozambique's national disaster management institute has called on citizens to leave southern parts of the country that are badly affected by flooding.

Coastal Mozambique is home to nine international river basins, making it especially vulnerable to flooding. (AFP)

Flooding has struck parts of southern Mozambique, prompting authorities on Monday to call on people to evacuate the area.

The 3 Fevereiro Village near the Incomati River basin, in the district of Manhica, is one of the affected places.

"We are calling on the population to leave," said Rita Almeida a spokesperson for Mozambique's national disaster management institute.

According to the authorities, more than 6 000 people living in the Incomati basin are at risk from flooding.

Water levels along the river reached 5.9m in the low-lying southern district, now the worst affected. Hundreds of people have sought refuge in emergency shelters.

Low-lying southern Mozambique is particularly vulnerable to flooding, as several rivers flow down to the coast from neighbouring countries. In 2000, the country was devastated by floods that killed more than 800.

Rainy season
Coastal Mozambique is home to nine international river basins, making it especially vulnerable to flooding. The country's rainy season, which runs from October to April, is currently at its peak.

More rain is expected in southern Mozambique and neighbouring countries in the coming days, leading to fears of further flooding.

South Africa has also been hit by torrential rains for more than a week, but no major damage has been reported. – AFP

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