‘The greatest disaster to befall our country,’ says Zikalala


KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) Premier Sihle Zikalala has once again reflected on the magnitude of the floods that rocked the province recently, noting that relief efforts still continue – just a few days shy of South Africa marking 28 years of democracy.

He held a media briefing on Sunday, 24 April 2022, to give an update on government’s response to the devastating floods.

“With the unprecedented scale and extent of the devastation, the historic April of our freedom has now turned into the nightmare of our lives. As we settle to take stock of our lives, we are now convinced that this is by far the greatest disaster to befall our country in our lifetime. The sheer loss of lives is simply unprecedented and the damage to infrastructure is unparalleled certainly in the history of post-apartheid South Africa,” Zikalala said.

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Premier Sihle Zikalala has also expressed support to the loved ones of those missing as a result of the KZN floods and assured them that work is underway to find them.

Zikalala announced at the same briefing that at least 54 people remain unaccounted for while 435 others have been confirmed dead, a figure that was revised from 448.

“We also offer families and communities our assurance that we will continue to support them in these dark hours.As we speak, thousands of public servants, search and rescue officers, volunteers from all walks of life, non-governmental organisations, faith-based communities and the private sector are working around the clock to help us recover from this disaster.Every blanket, every mattress, every loaf of bread, every spade and rake picking debris tells us we are a nation that cares. We are a nation that leaves no one behind”

KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) Premier Sihle Zikalala

The premier further noted the fact that the national state of disaster was declared by President Cyril Ramaphosa just a week prior. He has reminded South Africans that responding to the disaster “demands an all-society-effort.”

“… That is exactly what we see unfold at this time. The generosity, resilience and improvisation we are witnessing in so many places and circumstances are an inspiration at a time of great difficulty,” Zikalala said.


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