SAD NEWS: 4 Zimbabweans die in South Africa


Four Zimbabweans died while others are missing following the devastating floods that hit KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa this week, killing over 300 people.

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa visited some of the areas hit by floods and said it was disheartening that the dead were mainly the elderly.

Officials had told him that more people remained trapped in their homes, while others are still missing.

The Zimbabwean Embassy in South Africa said it was working with the South African government in verifying the identity and numbers Zimbabweans killed by the floods province this week.

By late yesterday, officials in South Africa said 259 people had been killed by the floods.

Zimbabwe’s Consul-General to Johannesburg Mrs Melody Chaurura said the embassy was yet to ascertain the exact number of Zimbabweans who have died.

“We have received reports on our people who have died in KwaZulu Natal,” she said.

“However, at this point, we cannot tell the total or their identity since we are still verifying these reports with our host.

“As the consulate, we are ready to help those who were affected to make the repatriation of their remains seamless.”

Chairman of the Zimbabwe Community in South Africa, Mr Nqabutho Mabhena, said in his daily update yesterday that four Zimbabweans were confirmed dead in Pinetown near Durban when their rented house collapsed.

In one of the incidents, a couple died leaving their two-year-old child behind.

“The couple had settled in the area from Harare, while two more people are from Mutare and Karoi,” he said. “As an organisation, we want to convey our heartfelt condolences to the grieving families. So, far we are making all available plans to help them so that they get a decent burial.”

Others were said to be devastated after surviving the floods, but lost most of their valuables to floods.

Some Mozambicans and Malawians are also said to have been killed by the floods.

President Ramaphosa first stopped at a family home in Clermont where four people died on Monday night after a house collapsed.

“Whatever your problems are, we are with you all the way,” he told the family. “When we saw the destruction in KwaZulu-Natal, we decided to personally come here to see how Government can help. I am happy that the Premier (Sihle Zikalala) along with the mayor (eThekwini Municipality mayor Mxolisi Kaunda) and their teams have already started helping families.”

Over 500 schools have been closed in the province due to floods.

The province has since been placed under a state of disaster.

— Herald

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