Mangochi, Malawi – 17 January 2015 (MaraviPost): Yesterday President of the Republic of Malawi H.E. Prof. Arthur Peter Mutharika and his lovely wife Gertrude visited some areas which have been hit heavily by floods in Balaka and Mangochi districts.
The Malawi President and his wife said he went to assure the people affected by the disaster that, his government will give them total support and assistance to curtail the sufferings they are going through.
President Peter Mutharika said, he will make sure that those that have been displaced be provided with able shelter, food and medical attention.
“Since the declaration of the state of disaster few days ago, we have seen overwhelming reaction from within and outside the country especially our friends from Sweden, South Africa, United States President of America Barrack Obama and Botswana and we are appealing for more support”, said the president.
H.E. Prof. Arthur Peter Mutharika has also mobilized the Malawi armed forces and the Malawi Police to seek and assist marooned villagers to safety.
Dr. Dlamini Zuma also assures the Malawi government and people of Malawi that the AU will give the highest priority to providing modest humanitarian assistance to the government as part of efforts to alleviate the suffering of the affected population. This assistance will be availed to the government as soon as possible.
While .E. Prof. Arthur Peter Mutharika was consoling people in Balaka and Mangochi districts, his Vice President Saulos Chilima paid homage to the affected flood victims in the Shire Valley. Chilima arrived at Bangula at 8 O’clock in the morning. The affected families are living in class rooms for shelter while waiting for tents that will be provided soon.
Floods have devastated the Valley leaving over 153 persons missing. According to the Vice President, Government is monitoring the situation with quickest measures as to come up with short and long term solutions to avoid similar situations in the future.
Chilima said although bad weather is hindering Malawi Defense Force (MDF) efforts in their operations especially when using helicopters, over 800 people had been rescued since Wednesday morning.
“Helicopters are ideal in the present scenario. However, the weather is bad and in some cases there are places where they cannot land. Meanwhile, the MDF is using boats to rescue those that have been trapped in flood areas,” he said.
Saulos Chilima thanked the well-wishers who have come in individually and those as Organisations by helping with beddings, food and medication.
“As Government, we don’t want similar situations in the future. The rains will continue coming for the next two or so months, do not think of going back to where you got washed away after the waters recede. You need to relocate after these rescue operations. “Chilima told the gatherings at Bangula and at Chikwawa- TA Mulirima Headquarters.
The Department of Disaster Management Affairs in the Office of the Vice President has established a hotline, short code 115 for the general public to report on disasters that have occurred in their areas to facilitate quick response. The hotline is free of charge and can be accessed from any local network.
Meanwhile Government want to remind well-wishers and those that want to help that, financial contributions can be made through the following accounts: Malawi Kwacha, Bank Account Number 9700000100514 and 9700000105257, USD Currency Denominated Account Number 8600000018078, FDH Bank Limited, Swift code FDHFMWMW, Bank Name: Barclays Bank, London, Swift Code BARCGB22, Account Number 77231488 and Cheques should be made payable to “Office of the President – Disaster Management”.