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Minister Nkadimeng calls for caution as bad weather persists

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Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister, Thembi Nkadimeng is urging communities to be vigilant as inclement weather conditions persist across the country.

The devastating heavy rains and flooding continue to bring devastating conditions.

Minister Nkadimeng is appealing to communities to be cautious as they celebrate the new year amid the heavy rains.

“The Minister of Cogta Ms Thembi Nkadimeng has urged communities across the country to be extra cautious and on high alert as heavy rains and thunderstorms are continuing to bring about devastating conditions in some parts of the country. The KZN region is the hardest hit by rain which has already claimed 7 lives and 12 people are still missing. Flooding has also resulted in damages to infrastructure.”

The Weather Service has issued another level two warning for possible damaging winds in the Western Cape this week, while severe thunderstorms are expected to continue over parts of Johannesburg.

Stellenbosch University’s School for Climate Studies Acting Director Professor Guy Midgley explains:

Rescue efforts

Ladysmith bore the brunt of heavy rains affecting a thousand homes across KwaZulu-Natal. Aid organisations such as Al Imdaad Foundation and the Red Cross are aiding flood victims sheltered by friends and neighbours.

Al Imdaad Foundation coordinator and Ladysmith resident, Abed Karrim, describes the unprecedented tragedy, emphasising the high water levels that surpassed the height of home doors and the sweeping impact on people and vehicles.

“For us, it’s the first time that this has happened here at Ladysmith. It’s a tragedy as to the amount, the volume of water comes in. The height is higher than the door of your home. That’s the height of the water because you can see the debris when we went there and saw it and how it washed people. This is a real tragedy. Really. And if you look up the road here where we are standing and doing this interview, this is where cars were passing. And they came right into the water, and they were swept away.”

Al-Imdaad Foundation’s Abed Karrim: 

12 missing

Search and rescue efforts intensify, as 12 individuals remain missing after flash floods on Christmas Eve. Six fatalities occurred in Ladysmith, with an additional fatality reported in Mandeni on the North Coast.

The families of the 12 missing face an extended search, marking the fourth day of anguish, seeking closure amidst exhaustion and distress.

Winnie Jooste, who lost three relatives in the disaster, requests additional search teams and municipal support for the community to find solace.

Meanwhile, in the Western Cape, fires have destroyed informal settlements leaving many homeless.

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