The Ministry of Environment, Water and Climate has recommended that a state of disaster be declared in the country’s southern provinces where floods continue to wreak havoc.

The recommendation is to enable a needs assessment and the mapping of flooded areas as well as attending to critical basic needs of the people affected by flooding caused by Tropical Depression Dineo.

” We (ministry) through the Meteorological Services Department will continue to monitor the situation and advice accordingly but at the moment we recommended a state of disaster in the southern provinces,” said Minister Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri, adding that the nation needs to take heed of the early warning systems so that people are not caught unaware.

The government is actively conducting a damage and needs assessment and rendering necessary assistance such as food and medication to people living in affected areas.

The Minister of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing, Cde Saviour Kasukuwere revealed that the state of the damage by floods, if quantified is running into millions of dollars and requires the government in partnership with  the private sector and non-governmental organisations to work together and come up with structures to refurbish the destroyed infrastructure.

“While the government and its partners are doing all they can to alleviate the problem, people should stay on high alert, move to higher ground and desist from crossing flooded rivers,” said Cde Kasukuwere.

In some areas such as Tsholotsho, the government promised to avail alternative land to relocate families most of whom have agreed to be moved.

The government has to date mobilised tents, food and non-food items to assist displaced families and the Air Force of Zimbabwe is airlifting marooned villagers.

As a long term measure, the Department of Civil Protection confirmed undertaking a methodology examination and livelihoods study on how to manage such disasters.