1/26/2015
Flooding In Malawi

Parts of southern Africa are in state of emergency after tropical cyclone Bansi, dumped enormous amounts of rainfall throughout the region.

Malawi is one of those countries that have been devastated, with the death toll totaling an estimated 200 people (and rising), along with displacing an estimated 200,000 from their homes. About half of the country has been declared a disaster zone, as the country has gone through it’s worst flooding in history.

The news isn’t getting any better as they are expecting a second cyclone, worse than Bansi, to hit this week. Please remember our brothers and sisters in this time of need. We know of about 150 families who have lost their homes and many more may be in need. 

Brother Saidi, VGR office manager in Blantyre, was out and checking on the believers as soon as the floodwaters subsided enough to get his four-wheel drive truck into the villages. He has been in contact with as many pastors as possible, checking on the wellbeing of the believers and assessing their needs. Here is the report of his initial trip into the flood zones. 

Tropical cyclone Bansi from east of Madagascar, blowing in the Indian Ocean, brought continuous downpouring of rains in Southern Malawi for four days, probably the greatest flood disaster in the history of its existence.

Estimates are showing that about 70,000 people have been affected in 15 districts, in the Southern region of Malawi, and about 400 people have been washed away. The death toll is expected to go up, as it is believed that 183 people have been washed away from one village alone. Massive destruction to agriculture, roads, bridges and general infrastructure including power facilities has complicated the situation. So far President Peter Mutharika has declared Malawi as a disaster area, declaring a state of emergency in the areas affected, and he has already pleaded for international assistance.

Obviously tents and food are urgently required; we thank God that rescue operations were very successful. Malawi’s military have done a very commendable job in rescuing people from the flooding waters using helicopters, some were found caught on top of tall trees.

Flood waters up to 8 feet deep have submerged homes, roads, and bridges, making access to some areas possible only by helicopter. There is also a risk of outbreaks of diseases in the camps as they are also overcrowded. The government has established about 6 camps in Chikhwawa and Nsanje districts alone. They have turned schools and churches into camps for all affected people, the rooms at these places are not enough to accommodate all the displaced people.

I have so far visited 6 districts out of the 15 affected districts, to see for myself the impact of the disaster, and also to check how many believers have been affected by this tropical cyclone. The destruction that the waters have caused is just massive. Driving through in waters as the roads also have been washed away, you can easily tell that the impact was totally different on the actual days of the disaster. Most of the pictures that I took are just showing bare grounds, and trees that survived, but those bare grounds were once villages, and the waters have changed everything.

Some of the affected villages are not accessible at this time around as the waters have submerged everything that the people owned. The only way to access these villages is only by boat.

We thank God that no death has been reported of any Message believer. My trip to lower shire, in the districts of Chikhwawa and part of Nsanje, found that 106 believing families have been displaced. Out of this figure 50 families have both their homes and crops swept away by the waters and everything grounded deep down by the sand. 56 families have their homes and fields submerged by the water, and their church swept away. In these two districts alone, a total of 106 believing families are homeless, and they are staying at the camp. They have lost everything that they have labored to own. They have no food, no shelter, no clothes, no Message materials, no Bibles, etc….otherwise they have to start all over again. They now have to buy plots to build houses and also lands for their gardens, as all of their gardens have been buried in the sand.

I also drove to meet the affected believers at one of the camps. A total of 1015 people have been placed at the camp that I visited, including our brothers and sisters. They are facing numerous challenges. They have no beddings, no clothes, no soap. Food supplied by the government and some organizations is not adequate to feed everybody, and the rooms at this camp are not enough to accommodate all. Most of the displaced people spend their nights outside the rooms, just trusting that the government will be able to supply them with tents.

In Mulanje, Chiradzulu, Zomba, and Blantyre districts, a total of 38 believing families have lost their houses, and about 10 families have lost their fields, and 2 churches pulled down.

Please be reminded that, our brothers and sisters need our prayers. Please let us keep them in our thoughts and in our prayers. They are in a very difficult situation; they need God to undertake for them.

Praise the Lord that some brothers and sisters have already started bringing some (supplies) to our office to be sent to our fellow believers affected by the floods.

Thank you very much and God bless you.

Brother Saidi

Voice Of God Recordings

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