MBERENGWA – There is disaster in Mberengwa as Cyclone Dineo induced floods hit the district from last Thursday to Saturday.
Mberengwa District Administrator, White Nkoma has called for Government to declare a state of emergency on the district after several dams including the mighty Manyuchi and nine bridges were destroyed by the floods.
He said more than 10 people were reported to have drowned.
Toilets and huts collapsed while scores of livestock such as cattle, goats and chickens were swept away by the waters. The hardest hit areas were Chegato, Ruzengwe, Matehwa, Mabika among others.
Hundreds of people in the district cannot access the Jeka Hospital, shops, registry and other services offered at Jeka Growth Point following the collapse of Tandavarai-Jeka Bridge.
Chief Mudavanhu said that many children had stopped going to school because of the floods. Some of those who went to schools in the morning failed to return as they could not cross flooded rivers and streams.
"The destruction of the bridge has cut off the link that connects Mberengwa North, East, South and West. Hundreds of people can no longer access the hospital, shops, registry among essential services offered at Jeka growth point," said Chief Mudavanhu.
Nkoma said Mberengwa must be declared a state of emergency as Mutsime, Nuanetsi, Gaambure, Chimwe, Gwamaticha among other rivers are flooded and have destroyed dams.
"It is a tragic situation and I think Mberengwa must be declared a state of emergency. There are more than 10 cases of drowning, livestock and houses have been destroyed and worse off still about nine major bridges have been destroyed with the Jeka bridge being the shocker," said DA Nkoma.
A Zinwa official from Chimwe Dam, Umzingwane catchment Rabson Gilberts said a typical case that epitomises the height of destruction is the the erosion of Tandavarai Jeka bridge across Nuanetsi Mwenezi River. He said even the flow gauge there was destroyed.
"We have never experienced such high floods that overflow these high bridges. However, the epitome of the ferociousness of these floods is that they even covered and washed away water gauge towers," Gilberts.
Most of the bridges lost were build during the colonial era and there is little hope that Government will cope considering that bridges destroyed in 2002 in Chiredzi during Cyclone Eline are not yet repaired.