Addressing the nation, Ramaphosa said that the floods in KZN have caused great economic and social damage.
“Nearly 4,000 homes have been completely destroyed and over 8,300 homes have been partially damaged. It is estimated that more than 40,000 people have been displaced by these floods. This is a humanitarian disaster that calls for a massive and urgent relief effort,” he said.
Not only was the province of KZN affected by the floods on 11 and 12 April, but parts of the Eastern Cape also experienced heavy rainfall. These include the districts of Alfred Nzo, Joe Gqabi and OR Tambo, where roads, bridges and houses have been extensively damaged, especially in the Port St Johns’ area.
In addition, the community of Langa in the Western Cape is counting the cost of a devastating fire, which destroyed about 300 homes and displaced around 1,000 people.
As a result, the president declared the country a national state of disaster in order to provide aid on a bigger scale to those affected in the three provinces.
“Cabinet therefore met in a special session last night and decided to declare a national state of disaster. This is to ensure an effective response across all spheres of government to the extreme weather events that have occurred in several parts of the country,” he explained.
MZANSI DOES NOT HAVE FAITH IN GOVERNMENT
While the president explained the decision to declare the country a national state of disaster, South Africans on social media are not happy. Many believe that this is another opportunity for government officials to loot relief funds as was the case with the R500 billion COVID-19 funding.