from ODIRILE TOTENG in Gaborone, Botswana
GABORONE, (CAJ News) – THE Tropical Cyclone Eloise ravaging a number of Southern African countries has left no less than 15 people dead in recent days.
Mozambique is the most impacted, with at least seven people deceased.
Three people have been confirmed dead in Zimbabwe and two each in Eswatini and South Africa, as well as a single death in Madagascar.
Overall, nearly 250 000 people have been affected and nearly 17 000 houses destroyed since Tropical Cyclone Eloise made landfall last Saturday.
Mokgweetsi Masisi, the Botswana president, on his role as Chairperson of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation expressed sympathy and solidarity with affected countries.
He lauded governments of the affected countries, civil society organisations and local and regional partners for efforts to salvage the situation.
“Proactive steps have been taken to save lives and to support the communities negatively affected by the cyclone,” Masisi said.
The cyclone has largely dissipated, having transitioned into a low pressure area during its passage over land.
However, there are fears it could bring further heavy rains and flooding to Botswana, eastern South Africa and Lesotho in the days ahead.
Eloise is the worst cyclone to hit the Southern African region since Idai in 2019.
It left more than 1 300 people dead in Malawi, Mozambique and Zimbabwe.
The harsh weather is attributed to climate change.
The climate situation is already worse in Southern Africa than in most other regions. Temperatures in the region are rising at twice the global average.
– CAJ News