2017 Zim flood victims yet to get accommodation

Top Stories Zimbabwe

Andile Tshuma

Seventy families in Tsholotsho District, Matabeleland North province, who were displaced by the 2017 floods have been left stranded as they are yet to get decent accommodation while Government is building their homes. 

The villagers whose old homes were on the banks of Gwayi River, were moved to higher ground in Tshino and Sawudweni villages in ward six, Tsholotsho North.

Some of the villagers are living in tattered tents worn out by the elements, at a time when it is raining heavily.

In a telephone interview, Matabeleland North Provincial Affairs Minister Richard Moyo said about 70 families out of 319 families that were moved from low ground were yet to move into their new homes.

“Government has successfully moved 250 families to their new homes in Sawudweni and Tshino villages in Tsholotsho. However, 70 houses are still under construction, which means that these households are yet to move into their new homes,” the minister said.

He highlighted that Government was facing financial constraints to complete the houses.

Minister Moyo said some beneficiaries are trickling back to their old settlements for agricultural activities, pointing out that this was worrying as the villagers were spending nights there, risking being marooned in the event of heavy rains and flooding.

“They love their old land very much because they say it is fertile, but I have advised them to go and till the land and tend their crops but come back and sleep over on higher ground in their new houses, but some are not heeding the advice,” Moyo said.

Some of the villages hit hard by the floods include Mahlosi, Mahlaba, Thamuhla, Mbamba, Mele, Lutshome, Maphili and Mbanyana.