Tragedy feared as latest cyclone reaches Madagascar


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from MARIO RAJOMAZANDRY in Antananarivo, Madagascar
Madagascar Bureau
ANTANANARIVO, (CAJ News) THE arrival of yet another tropical cyclone in Madagascar will worsen an already dire humanitarian situation.

Tropical Cyclone Emnati is projected to make landfall this week with projected wind speeds of 220km per hour.

It will be the second such cyclone to hit the island nation this month after Cyclone Batsirai made landfall on the east coast of Madagascar on February 5.

Since the beginning of the year, the storms Anna and Dumako also hit.

Batsira’s impact continues to be felt in the regions of Atsimo-Atsinanana, Atsinanana, Fitovinany and Vatovavy.

The Malagasy Red Cross Society (MRCS) and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) are working around the clock to minimize the humanitarian impact of the latest cyclone.

“There is a risk of a double tragedy, as some communities are expected to be hit by a second cyclone in less than a month,” said Andoniaina Ratsimamanga, the Secretary General of MRCS.

The official warned Emnati was likely to have a devastating effect on communities on the eastern coastline of Madagascar that are still reeling from the impact of Batsirai.

“Many have lost their homes, crops and livestock,” Ratsimamanga said.

“We are truly worried and call upon partners to increase their support and avert a humanitarian tragedy.”

Ahead of its landfall, the IFRC and Malagasy Red Cross Society teams as well as partners in the region are providing early warning support and preparing emergency relief items to help communities living in the cyclone’s path to stay safe.

Madagascar is one of the ten most vulnerable countries to disasters worldwide and faces compounding hazards.

While the eastern parts are battling cyclones, the southern parts are experiencing severe drought leaving at least 1,3 million people in need of food assistance.

These setbacks are blamed on climate change.

– CAJ News






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