KZN floods: Saudi Arabia sends deep condolences to victims’ families

KZN floods: Saudi Arabia sends deep condolences to victims’ families

As mop operations get underway in KwaZulu-Natal, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has expressed its deepest condolences to the people of South Africa and the families of the flood victims.

The devastating floods have left over 400 people dead, while thousands have been affected and displaced.

More than 13,500 households have also been affected by the floods and this has prompted the government and a plethora of NGOs to provide much-needed relief to communities.

In a statement, Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Affairs Ministry said it is saddened by the loss of life.

“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs expresses the condolences of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, to the government and people of the friendly Republic of South Africa, for the victims of the floods that hit the city of Durban, which resulted in a number of victims, injured, and missing. The Ministry expresses its sincere wishes for the survival of the missing and a speedy recovery for the injured.”

Earlier, the Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) said President Cyril Ramaphosa postponed his visit to the Middle East in order to focus on the government’s intervention in the flood-ravaged KwaZulu-Natal (KZN).

Ramaphosa was scheduled to travel to Saudi Arabia on Tuesday.

“The postponement allows the president to continue to meet with ministers on the situation in the flood-ravaged province and to assess how the different spheres of government, in partnership with civil society organisations and communities, are addressing the crisis,” the department said in a statement.

Meanwhile, emergency services have been on high alert as recovery operations and humanitarian relief efforts continue in KZN.

Gift of the Givers founder Dr. Imtiaz Sooliman said the focus in the province is on search and recovery.

“The rescue phase is over. The numbers are huge. We are receiving so many messages of people missing it is incredible. A lot of people are missing in Inanda, Molweni and in Pinetown. It’s five members of a family, nine members of a family, three members of a family, the numbers are just rising.”

Sooliman said people who are missing family members can WhatsApp the organisation on 072 8182 050.

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