Nearly 5 000 Malawians are in dire need of food and shelter following hailstorms which destroyed houses in the northern part of Karonga last week, district commissioner Richard Hara has said.
According to Hara, assessments by the District Civil Protection Committee revealed that 1351 households were left homeless in some villages under Paramount Chief Kyungu and Traditional Authority Kilupula.
The report indicates that 407 houses collapsed while 944 were partially damaged. Almost 30 toilets were reduced to rubble.
However, locals say the loss could be bigger.
‘‘Looking at the extent of the damage, we are appealing for immediate assistance. We need about 2700 blankets, 1351 tents and bags of maize to rescue the victims ’’ said Hara.
Karonga district is prone to disasters, especially floods, stormy rains, earthquakes and drought.
The Department of Climate Change and Meteorological Services has since warned people living in low-lying areas to move upland as the district is likely to experience floods due to heavy rains until Sunday. n