Dozens miss­ing, feared dead af­ter So­mali cyclone

African Times - - International/Africa - SAAD MUSE IN MO­GADISHU, SO­MA­LIA

SOME 70 peo­ple re­main miss­ing a fort­night af­ter the deadly Cyclone Sa­gar rav­aged So­ma­lia.

It is be­lieved they are dead, along­side the 49 that were of­fi­cially de­clared killed af­ter one of the strong­est storms ever recorded in So­ma­lia. Cyclone Sa­gar, which left an en­tire year’s worth of rain in a mat­ter of hours, left in its trail death, floods, de­struc­tion of farm­land and in­fra­struc­ture.

Thou­sands of live­stock were killed and civil­ians dis­placed. Humanitarian agen­cies said com­mu­ni­ties in the coastal ar­eas of So­ma­liland and ma­jor por­tions of Aw­dal district, as well as some coastal com­mu­ni­ties in Punt­land are still reel­ing from the im­pact of the trop­i­cal cyclone.

“The im­pact of the cyclone has af­fected com­mu­ni­ties that were still re­cov­er­ing from pro­longed drought,” said a lo­cal spokesper­son of the United Na­tions Of­fice for the Co­or­di­na­tion of Humanitarian Af­fairs. Gov­ern­ments and aid agen­cies face an up­hill task man­ag­ing the af­ter­math of the dis­as­ter that di­rectly af­fected about 168 000 peo­ple. Some 277 hectares of land were de­stroyed in the af­fected vil­lages. Over 80 per cent of com­mu­nity shel­ters have been de­stroyed and 33 schools were af­fected. Pri­or­ity needs in­clude food, health ser­vices, shel­ter and non­food items.

The heavy rains and dis­tur­bance of tracks have hin­dered hu­man­i­tar­i­ans’ abil­ity to ac­cess some af­fected ar­eas. Mean­while, armed clashes in Tukaraq town in the Sool re­gion has dis­placed nearly 2 500 house­holds, com­pound­ing the humanitarian sit­u­a­tion and fur­ther ham­per­ing as­sis­tance.

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