Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

PERSPECTIVE

Crisis averted: What lessons have been learned from Cape Town's water shortage?

Read more

REVISITED

Video: Shenzhen, from fishing port to China’s Silicon Valley

Read more

FASHION

Dior trots out Cruise collection at Chantilly stables

Read more

IN THE PRESS

'I really don't care', do we? Melania Trump's coat chaos

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Eurozone agrees 'historic' deal to pave way for Greece's bailout exit

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

South Sudan rebels say more time needed to achieve peace

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Melania, migrant children and a curious message

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Eurozone ministers inching towards 'credible' debt deal for Greece

Read more

THE DEBATE

Erdogan goes all in: The high stakes of Turkey's elections

Read more

Africa

DR Congo floods leave scores dead, thousands homeless

© JUNIOR D.KANNAH, AFP | A woman street vendor covers her make-shift stall with a tarp as rains flood the streets in a neighborhood of Kinshasa, back in April 19, 2012

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2016-12-29

Floods triggered by heavy rains and a river bursting its banks have killed at least 50 people and left thousands homeless in the southwest Democratic Republic of Congo, a provincial governor told AFP on Thursday.

Torrential rains caused the Kalamu river, which flows through the city of Boma, to overflow for two hours before the waters receded, washing some of the victims across the border into Angola.

"The rains on the night of Monday to Tuesday in Boma have caused at least 50 deaths," Jacques Mbadu, governor of Kongo Central province, told AFP, adding that a search was still going on for "more bodies that may be buried in the mud".

"We buried 31 bodies on Wednesday and we expect to get about 20 more bodies back today that ended up across the border in Angola," Mbadu added.

Mbadu said the waters hit a peak of two metres (six feet) above their usual level, destroying at least 500 homes and leaving several thousand people homeless.

Boma, which lies near the mouth of the River Congo around 470 kilometres (300 miles) southwest of Kinshasa, is the country's only Atlantic port.

"This is a cyclical phenomenon which happens every 10 years. It last happened in January 2015 but with climate change it's now happened again in December 2016," Mbadu said.

Several locals told AFP that two of the city's three districts were still covered in mud, up to a metre deep in some places.

Congolese towns and cities are typically built up in a haphazard fashion and government services to deal with natural disasters are practically non-existent.

Despite its vast mineral wealth, Congo is classed among the world's poorest countries and two thirds of its 70 million inhabitants get by on less than $1.25 a day.

(AFP)

Date created : 2016-12-29

  • DR CONGO

    Tense calm returns to DR Congo after deadly protests

    Read more

  • DR CONGO

    Dozens killed in attacks amid political unrest in DR Congo

    Read more

  • DR CONGO

    'Police officer and protesters killed' as demonstrations turn violent in DR Congo

    Read more

COMMENT(S)