FEBRUARY 9, 2023
BY LUNGA MASUKU
Mbabane – Ongoing rains throughout the Kingdom of eSwatini formerly Swaziland has seen main rivers and streams in most parts of landlocked country flooded.
The dire situation has seen schools like Mhlume Central High suspending lessons when a majority of classes and teachers houses were waterlogged. It was the same case for people around Vuvulane who had to vacate their houses as a result of the waterlogging.
School going children in the outskirts of the capital, Mbabane in areas around Mbuluzi were seen social media platforms taking risks when they attempted to cross the flooded Mbuluzi-Luve Bridge about 25 km in the north eastern part of the country.
A snap survey by Siyalu Media has uncovered that main rivers in northern part of the country on the borderline with Mpumalanga Province were overflowing. These rivers are Mlumati or Lomati River which flows into neighbouring South Africa at a place known as Mlumati next to Magogeni just a few kilometres from Malalane.
Police spokeswoman for the Royal eSwatini Police, Superintendent Phindile Vilakati has been making announcements of state broadcaster that people should not dare try to cross flooded rivers. Speaking to eSwatini Broadcasting and Information Services mentioned that mini bus was swept by a flooded river around Tshanenei area and attempts were being made to evacuate the school going children inside the 15-seater mini bus.
In her radio announcement she said members of the public are warned that the following rivers, streams are flooded/overflowing and they exercise caution or alternatively find another route.
Affected rivers include Mbuluzi Rver via Mbelebeleni/ Luve/Florence route, Ngwempisi River via Mankayane going towards Sicunusa, Ngwempisana via Gebeni, Masini behind Tri-Cash, Mndobandoba Big Bend, Mlambotjwala and Ntintinyane and other rivers between Ntfonjeni and Timpisini Inkhundla.
As police officers, we have dispatched our officers to the affected areas in an attempt to save lives since some might be tempted to try their luck yet crossing a flooded river or stream is very dangerous. Parents and teachers are requested to ensure that children are kept safe throughout this period, police spokeswoman warned on Wednesday morning.
So far no lives or major incidents were known at the time of compiling this report, the heavy rains were also falling in neighbouring countries like the Republic of Mozambique and some parts of the Republic of South Africa.