KZN MEC for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) Sipho Hlomuka has deployed disaster management teams to commence with the evacuation of residents in the town of Ladysmith and Msinga following the heavy rains that led to local rivers bursting their banks over the weekend.

So far 70 residents have been evacuated from the flooded areas in Ladysmith and moved to the Indoor Sports Centre. Disaster management teams are working together with various non-governmental organisations to provide immediate relief, such as blankets, sponges and hot meals to the affected residents.  

The town of Ladysmith received significant rainfall over the weekend which led to the Kliprivier bursting its banks and flooding parts of the CBD. Hlomuka has commended the quick response by the disaster management teams and social partners in responding to this incident. So far there has been no report of loss of life or injury as a result of this incident.

In the town of Msinga, heavy rains have caused the uThukela River to burst its banks and flood surrounding areas. Disaster management teams have commenced with evacuating residents to safer places, such as community halls. Hlomuka has called upon residents who are living in low-lying areas to seek shelter on higher ground. 

The MEC has also warned communities against building along river banks. Hlomuka has likewise urged residents to avoid crossing low-lying bridges. “We have recently experienced inclement weather conditions, which have left a trail of death and destruction in their wake. So far 25 people have died with one person missing and R3.3- billion in damages has been incurred during the current summer season. We appeal to residents to be cautious,” said Hlomuka.  

Disaster management teams are continuing to monitor the situation across the province. 

Issued by the Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs