Heavy rains in parts of Limpopo have washed away bridges at Mahunguwi and Kutama- Sinthumule and damaged houses in near by Thohoyandou. Community members in the affected areas say furniture and other goods have been damaged. They allege that they are not getting any help from government.
One of the residents, Asihalo Maphiri, says they want government to build them a proper bridge and to upgrade the rainwater drainage system in the area.
“It rained heavily and our houses were flooded, our furniture was damaged. We told the municipality that the problem is lack of a proper bridge and they are instead laughing at us saying we think we know better and we are behaving like engineers. We don’t sleep at night when it is raining like this, we want some help. We were allocated these residential sites by the municipality. Let them construct a proper road because we know the all this havoc is caused by the small bridge which is not big enough to carry high volumes of rain water.”
Spokesperson of the Vhembe District Municipality Matodzi Ralushai says the damage caused by heavy rains in the district has not yet reached a point where the district disaster unit can get involved. He says the problem can so far be handled by local municipalities.
However, Ralushai says food parcels and blankets were delivered to some families. Weather forecasters have predicted that there is a 80 percent chance of down pours in some parts of the district on Sunday.
Another resident, Esther Ratshivhadelo’s describes what has happened to her 12 roomed house.
“The damage is huge because my house is flooded and furniture damaged, the problem started with the construction of the tarred road. I have been staying here since 2001 and there was no problem. When they were constructing the road they changed and closed the original bridge which used to channel water to a nearby stream. We told them but they kept on telling us we just have to insure our houses or relocate. These sites were sold to us by the local municipality.”