By Collings Kalivute, MANA
The Department of Disaster and Management Affairs (DODMA) has urged people in the country to plant more trees during this rainy season as one way of preventing disasters in the near future.
Speaking in Ntcheu last Sunday after DODMA officials visited flood affected households in the area of Group Village Headman Phanga, Deputy Director for Response and Recovery Dyce Nkhoma said the Department is concerned with the extent of disasters that have affected many people in the district.
Over 252 households were affected by floods which occurred on December 31 in Traditional Authority Ganya and Masasa and 24 households are camping at Phanga Primary School.
He said disasters are a setback to the development of the country and planting more trees is the solution to prevent them.
“We are very concerned with the floods that have affected a lot of people here in Ntcheu,” he said. “Our department will support the affected households but we are also urging them to plant more trees as one of the measures to avoid such kinds of disasters.”
Nkhoma also emphasized on the call by the State Vice-President, Everton Chimulilenji that all people in disaster prone areas should relocate to upper areas before the situation worsens.
His remarks had followed an update by the Department of Metrological services that some regions of the country will experience heavy rains that may lead to disasters like floods.
“Let me also remind you on the call by the Vice-President that everyone living in disaster prone areas should relocate to uplands to avoid experiencing disaster.
“I should also remind you that we should always follow weather updates as it helps to plan on our daily life,” Nkhoma said.
DODMA donated a 50kg bag of rice to each household, kitchen utensils, salt and beans.
One of the beneficiaries, Henderson Kakhwesi was appreciative of the gesture from DODMA, saying they lack a lot of basic needs most of which they lost during the floods.
On relocation, Kakhwesi said they are ready to adhere to the call only if government gives them land for re-settlement.
Member of Parliament for the area, Nancy Chaola Mdooko commended DODMA and its Minister, Everton Chimulilenji for the timely support.