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Sudan declares State of Emergency as floods continue to ravage the country

September 5 - 2020 KHARTOUM / PORT SUDAN / SENNAR / KASSALA
Singa, capital of Sennar, on Thursday, September 3 (Social media)
Singa, capital of Sennar, on Thursday, September 3 (Social media)

Sudan’s National Security and Defence Council has declared the country ‘a natural disaster area’ following flooding in 16 of the 18 states. Half a million people have lost their homes. More than 100 people have died. The UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) has donated 100 tons of relief items to the victims.

The National Security and Defence Council, chaired by Lt Gen Abdelfattah El Burhan, President of the Sovereign Council, on Friday also imposed the State of Emergency throughout the country, for a period of three months.  

A high committee will be formed, headed by the Minister of Labour, to address the effects of the heavy rainfall and record high levels of the Nile waters this rainy season.

The announcement came after floods affected 16 states of Sudan, killing at least 101 people. More than 100,000 homes collapsed completely or partially. About half a million people have become homeless. In particular parts of eastern Sudan have been hit.

The level of the Nile in Khartoum has exceeded the levels recorded during the “national disaster years” of 1946 and 1988, and is expected to rise more.

In a cabinet meeting on Friday, Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok urged the integration of official and popular efforts to halt the flooding and mitigate losses during the past few days.

Evacuations needed

While searching for missing people, the Civil Defence Police in Sennar found the bodies of two elderly persons in the office of a housing agency in the town on Friday.

This brings the number of flood victims in Sennar to 12, the police reported in a statement. They also warned the people not to enter their submerged homes with boats to rescue what is left of their possessions, as the walls or roofs may collapse.

In Red Sea state, Governor Abdallah Shangarai declared Tokar and surroundings a natural disaster area, after the flooding of Khor Baraka affected 75 per cent of the town.

After a meeting of the state’s Rainy Reason Emergency Room, he requested the authorities in Khartoum to urgently intervene and help evacuate people in Tokar with helicopters.

The governor further called on Khartoum, the Civil Defence police, and “other competent authorities” to urgently plan the drainage of water in Tokar. He also requested the provision of equipment for spraying fog and mosquito nets for the affected people.

The flood waters of El Gash river in Kassala is still surrounding villages in Reefi Aroma locality in the state of Kassala.

Khalifa El Ameen, coordinator of the Resistance Committee in Dugein (Duqayn) and its environs, told Radio Dabanga that the water of El Gash flooded his village, Magauda, and five other villages in the neighbourhood.

About 1,860 houses have been destroyed. The affected people have been transferred to five centres.

100 ton of support for flood victims arrives at the airport of Khartoum (SUNA)

El Ameen called on the authorities in Khartoum and Kassala to urgently provide drinking water, food, medicines, and shelter materials.

Aid arrives

The UNHCR Representative in Sudan said on Friday that it will immediately start distributing the 100 tons of relief items that arrived in Khartoum on Friday, it donated to aid the flood victims in Sudan.

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has supported the transport of the aid items.

 


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