WATCH: 'The water was up to my knees' - Khayelitsha residents battle with flooded homes

2019-07-24 15:47
Flooding in Khayelitsha after heavy rains (Supplied)

Flooding in Khayelitsha after heavy rains (Supplied)

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When Khayelitsha resident Lindani Mbombela was woken by heavy rains in the early hours of Wednesday morning, he did not expect to find his whole shack flooded.

"The water was up to my knees," he told News24.

"It was like a river. Now the area [Qandu-qandu] is split in two by the water."

The South African Weather Service had warned of strong winds and heavy rainfall over Cape Town and surrounding areas, lasting until early on Wednesday, as two cold fronts set in.

Mbombela, 29, who stays in the shack with his two younger brothers, said people had rallied to help each other get their goods to dry land.

He had been renting a home in Town Two up until a year ago.

Explaining how he ended up on a flood plain, he said: "Due to a financial crisis and a fight with the landlord, I wasn't able to stay there. That was why I had to occupy land in Qandu-qandu."

(Supplied)

(Supplied)

He said flooding was a regular occurrence in the area.

Because he had to sort out his shack, Mbombela was unable to go to work on Wednesday and said he sent his manager a video of the flooding to explain why he was taking unpaid leave.

"I can't leave my shack. If I go, where must I sleep when I get back?"

Qandu-qandu committee chairperson Ntombomzi Mafaya indicated to GroundUp earlier this month that a section of the area was like a wetland and stayed wet.

"We have advised people not to build there, but they do," said Mafaya.

CIty of Cape Town Safety and security mayoral committee member JP Smith said the weather conditions had affected 3 640 structures in Khayelitsha, Masiphumelele, Imizamo Yethu, Burundi, Nomzamo and Wallacedene.

(Supplied)

Roads were also flooded across the city, most notably in Wallacedene, Pelican Park, Ottery and Diep River.

The weather also resulted in power outages in Strand, Bonteheuwel, Observatory, Noordhoek, Joe Slovo Park, Athlone, Wynberg, Gugulethu, Nyanga, Sunnydale, Rondebosch, Philippi, Mitchells Plain, Hout Bay and Plumstead.

"This situation will change as repair teams make their way through the list of reported incidents. We ask that residents please bear with us, as assessments have to be completed for purposes of record, before assistance like flood kits can be provided," said Smith.

"The City did make emergency shelter available to the affected communities; however, these offers have not been accepted. We have also informed SASSA around the need for humanitarian relief."

Read more on:    cape town  |  khayelitsha  |  weather
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