Flooding kills seven people in South Sudan’s Unity State, according to officials.
Authorities in Unity state said at least seven people have died when floodwaters in Mayendit County in recent days flooded numerous houses. Officials estimate that approximately 400 people have been relocated as a result of the floods.
Heavy rains have increased during the last several weeks, Mayendit County Commissioner Gatluak Nyang told VOA’s South Sudan in Focus.
Seven individuals drowned, while 17 people were bitten by snakes, according to Nyang.
Hundreds of people lost their lives as a result of the floods, which devastated infrastructure, homes, and livelihoods. According to Nyang, almost 90% of the land in Mayendit is underwater.
According to him, almost 400 people evacuated to higher ground for safety, and more than 500 animals and 300 goats perished as a result of the floods.
“People are in a very, very poor health condition,” Nyang added. “There are a lot of illnesses… because of the bad hygiene, the lack of shelter, the absence of mosquito nets, and the fact that many have malaria.”
Nyang asked humanitarian organizations and the government to give food, shelter, and medication to avoid the spread of waterborne illnesses.
The executive director of Unity state’s Relief and Rehabilitation Commission, John Juan Bum, has appealed for assistance.
“We have sent the complete emergency and disaster report to UNCHR and the NGO (nongovernmental organization) forum this morning so that they can share it with all the partners on the ground so that they can react or at least start a fast response,” Bum told South Sudan in Focus.
Kai Yer, a UNHCR coordinator in Unity state, said he had not yet received complete information on the magnitude of the devastation.
“We don’t know the specifics,” Yer said.
Several areas of South Sudan, notably Jonglei and Lakes states, as well as portions of Central and Western Equatoria states, have been frequently ravaged by torrential rains.
According to the South Sudan government and humanitarian organizations, flooding in regions around the White Nile River impacted approximately 800,000 people between July and September 2020, causing whole villages to evacuate to higher ground.
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