Floods cause R440m in damages
Johannesburg - The financial cost of the recent floods that ravaged some parts of Mpumalanga is estimated at more than R440 million.
Premier David Mabuza told journalist during a press briefing on Friday that the money is needed to fix or rebuild bridges, roads, houses, schools and agricultural projects.
“The estimated damage is R445 718 000. The (provincial government) in the short term has made R36 069 444 available while municipalities have contributed R25,79 million,” said Mabuza.
He said the Provincial Joint Operation Committee’s assessment report indicated that of the 1452 affected households, 330 were badly affected while seven people died.
He said the most affected district municipality was Ehlanzeni, which includes the five local municipalities of Nkomazi, Mbombela, Thaba Chweu, Bushbuckridge and Umjindi.
“The most affected municipalities are Bushbuckridge with 130 incidents, Nkomazi with 74, Mbombela with 59, Umjindi 40 and Thaba Chweu with 27 incidents,” he said.
Mabuza broke down the costs, saying roads and bridges need R266 293 000 while schools need R47 571 000 to be repaired or rebuilt. Agriculture needs R18 677 000 while housing needs R18 million.
“Estimations in each municipality are as follows: Bushbuckridge, R35 million, Mbombela, R38 million, Nkomazi, R52 million, Thaba Chweu, R2,5 million and Umjindi, R52 million,” said Mabuza.
The premier said the provincial government will continue its efforts to relieve the affected families and restore much needed services for a period of three to six months. “We have already done the necessary protocols to access the necessary help from the national government and the national government has positively responded to our plight,” said Mabuza.
He added that the floods had also affected water systems in parts of the province.
He said temporary measures have been taken while machines and broken pipes are being repaired.
“As pumps and machines have been broken during the floods, we have come up with temporary measures to provide water while we are fixing the damage,” Mabuza said.
Mabuza said 900 people suffered from diarrhoea in the Bushbuckridge municipality.
“As many things were damaged, including water systems, we have also recorded 900 diarrhoea incidents caused by dirty water consumption in the Bushbuckridge municipality. So, we are now providing clean water to the municipality through tankers and other means,” said Mabuza.