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CPU issues floods warning

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The Civil Protection Unit (CPU) has warned that parts of Plumtree and Beitbridge are likely to be hit by floods as heavy rains continue to pound the southern African region.

“Flood alerts have been issued across the southern Africa region and flooding is very much possible in low-lying districts,” reads a CPU statement.

Reaction teams are already on high alert, ready to assist in the event of an emergency in flood-prone areas such as Muzarabani in Mashonaland Central and Beitbridge in Matabeleland South.

Botswana and Zambian meteorological departments have also predicted a general increase in rainfall activity in most parts of the two countries, which could lead to flash floods.

The flood threats will force the Zambezi River Authority (ZRA), which is run jointly by Zambia and Zimbabwe, to open floodgates of the Kariba Dam, situated between north-western Zimbabwe and south-eastern Zambia, on January 29, the officials said.

The opening of the floodgates could cause flooding in the region.

The ZRA issued a warning in late December last year that it would open the floodgates in January, meaning that communities may need to be relocated.

South African media reports have said parts of South Africa experienced heavy floods in the second week of December, displacing at least 1 200 families.

The United States Agency for International Development’s Famine Early Warning Systems Network (Fewsnet) has warned of possible flooding along some of the major rivers such as the Zambezi, which flows through seven southern African countries.

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