Malawi Closes Schools As It Braces For Cyclone Wreaking Havoc In Mozambique
The authorities in Malawi have closed schools in 10 Southern districts over safety concerns after cyclone freddy wreaked devastation in neighbouring mozambique.
Heavy rains pounding Southern Malawi have washed away roads and disrupted power generation, with more rainfall expected in the next few days.
Physical classes have been suspended for Monday and Tuesday in all learning institutions in the districts.
Teachers and learners have been encouraged to use available online platforms and radio lessons, the education ministry said in a statement.
Neighbouring Mozambique has received more than a year’s worth of rainfall in the past four weeks as Cyclone Freddy made landfall on Sunday for the second time in a month.
The death toll in mozambique is at least 28 since the storm first made landfall.
Dr Victor Mithi, president of Malawi’s Society of Medical Doctors, said the electricity blackout is dangerous.
“At the moment most hospitals don’t have power apart from those that depend on fuel.
If you think of all the small health centres and small community hospitals – they completely don’t have any source of power.
This is very dangerous because if you think of patients that need oxygen therapy, they cannot be assisted.
Those babies born prematurely may not be in proper nursery care because there is no power.
Drugs that have to be kept at a specific temperature may not be there. We’re not sure when this might end, but we might lose lives.”
The Malawi Department of Disaster Management Affairs said on Tuesday that the cyclone made landfall over Nampula province in Mozambique the day before, after crossing from Madagascar.
“Councils are conducting assessments to establish the extent of damage and assisting all those in need.
Meanwhile, the department has deployed a search and rescue team,” said a statement by Charles Kalemba, Malawi’s commissioner for disaster management.
The Department of Climate Change and Meteorological Services advised Malawians to move to higher ground and avoid crossing flooded rivers and streams.