Cyclone Ana Floods Choke Malawi ’s Water and Sanitation Goals

Residents survey the damage after Cyclone Ana triggered winds and floods in Malawi. There has been a call following the latest flooding for climate-resilient approaches to WASH because damaged infrastructure, especially water infrastructure, has serious health consequences. Credit: Charles Mpaka/IPSBy Charles MpakaBlantyre, Malawi, Feb 22 2022 (IPS) On the night of January 24, 2022, as Cyclone Ana-triggered rains incessantly rattled on the rusty roof of her house, amid intervals of gusty winds, a thud woke up Josephine Kumwanje from her sleep. Her heart leapt as she thought thieves had broken into the house. She summoned some courage, tiptoed to the door of her bedroom, and peered into the dark. She did not see any evidence that the house had been burgled. The windows and the main door were intact. But she could not sleep because the rain poured down in torrents – until the early hours of the morning when it reduced to a drizzle. “In a long time, I haven’t seen a combination of heavy rains and strong winds in one night,” she recalls. In the morning, she saw what that thud was all about: The pit latrine behind her house had collapsed, the slab caving into the hole so that the toilet was no longer usable. Kumwanje’s latrine was one of the five that had collapsed in the neighbourhood that night. The storm had ripped off the roofs of three houses, and gullies were gorged into areas. The residents could not imagine that such damage was possible. The tropical depression ...
Source: IPS Inter Press Service - Health - Category: International Medicine & Public Health Authors: Tags: Africa Aid Climate Change Development & Aid Featured Headlines Health Poverty & SDGs TerraViva United Nations Water & Sanitation #CycloneAna IPS UN Bureau Malawi UNICEF WASH Source Type: news