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Most of the port city of Beira is under water. Courtesy Photo
Most of the port city of Beira is under water. Courtesy Photo

Mozambique Cyclone Survivors Desperate for Help

So far 200 people have been confirmed dead in the southern African country, but the death toll could be much higher.
posted onMarch 20, 2019
nocomment

By BBC

Mozambique's port city of Beira is reeling from the damage inflicted by Cyclone Idai.

So far 200 people have been confirmed dead in the southern African country, but the death toll could be much higher.

Those who survived the disaster have had little reprieve to mourn the loss of their loved ones or salvage the little that is remaining of their belongings. They are in desperate need of food, shelter and clothing, as the BBC's Pumza Fihlani reports from Beira.

Inside a makeshift response centre at the airport in Beira, aid agencies are scrambling to get to those still trapped across the region.

It's the first point of call for all the teams coming in from around the world and offers the first glimpse of how heavily this operation is relying on outside help.

A few kilometres away, panic is setting in. The people of Beira are growing anxious - help is coming, but it is really slow and not nearly enough.

"I have nothing. I have lost everything. We don't have food. I don't even have blankets. We need help," one woman tells me as we make our way through the village of Manhava.

Beira's geography, with parts of it lying below sea level, has always made it vulnerable to effects of extreme weather like Cyclone Ida which made landfall last week with winds of up to 177 km/h (106 mph).

The city bore the full brunt of the destructive storm, which triggered flooding of the whole city and knocked down buildings and cut off roads. This is now stalling rescuers from reaching desperate people in need.

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