Flash floods kill 7 children in S. Somalia
Friday, May 10, 2013
Flash floods from heavy rains in
southern Somalia have killed seven children, displaced 50,000 others and
inundated 6,400 hectares of farmland in parts of the Horn of Africa
nation, the UN said on Thursday.
UN Office for Coordination of
Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) Somalia Public information officer Roberta
Russo said the flooding, which began during the main rainy season, has
affected Baidoa, Jowhar, Miido and Lower Shebelle areas of southern
"So far we have seven children who have
been killed and about 50,000 people have been displaced because of the
main rainy season started in March," Russo told Xinhua by telephone in
The UN humanitarian agency said
thousands of Somalis have been rendered homeless after flash floods
triggered by days of heavy rainfall pounding parts of Middle Shebelle
areas of southern Somalia.
Russo said the locals have not heeded warnings for them to move to higher grounds because of protecting their assets.
"They (locals) have preferred to remain
behind to protect their assets instead of being evacuated from the areas
affected by the flooding or where water levels are high," she said.
According to OCHA, parts of the country
particularly the south were affected by flooding following heavy rains
across Somalia and the Ethiopian highlands.
"The Juba and Shabelle river basins
continued to receive moderate to heavy rains during the month. These
floods have led to loss of property, damage to infrastructure and
displacement of people," Russo said.
Russo also said the flooding has been exacerbated by the locals who cut into river embankments to irrigate their land.
She said humanitarian partners are
supporting flood-affected communities with several activities, including
pumping water from flooded areas, provision of non food items, water
purification and rebuilding river banks to allow people to go back to
"The good news is that we managed to
intervene in most of the areas which have been affected by the flooding.
We are providing clean water to avoid an outbreak of cholera," Russo