Flash flooding has wreaked havoc in the eastern territory of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, claiming the lives of at least 176 people. The disaster struck the territory of Kalehe, located in the province of South Kivu, as heavy precipitation caused rivers to overflow, inundating the communities of Bushushu and Nyamukubi.
The devastating floods have left a trail of destruction, with 176 people confirmed dead, and others still reported missing. The scale of the tragedy has been further compounded as a local civil society member revealed the shocking discovery of 227 bodies.
With the region’s structures, schools, and hospitals heavily damaged, survivors are now left with no choice but to endure the hardships of sleeping outside. The situation has given rise to immense human suffering, with the wounded seeking medical attention, and fractures being reported as a common injury among the survivors.
The magnitude of this disaster is not an isolated incident in the region. South Kivu has experienced its fair share of floods and landslides in the past. Only last week, neighboring Rwanda also faced a comparable catastrophe, with 130 people losing their lives, and over 5,000 homes being destroyed due to natural calamities.
Sadly, this isn’t the first time the Democratic Republic of the Congo has endured such a catastrophe. Back in October 2014, a strikingly similar event unfolded, resulting in the destruction of over 700 homes and the disappearance of more than 130 people.
Amidst the current tragedy, efforts to alleviate the suffering of those affected are underway. Workers from the Red Cross have been tirelessly working to retrieve and pile up mud-covered corpses, attempting to bring some semblance of dignity to the deceased and comfort to the bereaved families.
Authorities and aid organizations are also focusing on providing medical assistance, shelter, and essential supplies to those affected, as the region grapples with the aftermath of this natural disaster.