Death toll over 155 from torrential rain

DAR ES SALAAM, TZ – The death toll from weeks of torrential rain and consequential flooding in Tanzania has risen to 155, with over 200,000 individuals impacted, according to the country’s prime minister.

The severe weather conditions, which have been exacerbated by the El Niño climate pattern, have devastated the coastal region and the capital, Dar es Salaam. The number of fatalities has more than doubled in the past fortnight as rainfall continues to intensify.

Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa informed parliament about the extensive damage caused by the floods, including the destruction of roads, bridges, and railways. Schools have been forced to close, and emergency services are working tirelessly to rescue those stranded by the floodwaters.

Majaliwa also issued a warning to residents in low-lying areas, advising them to relocate to safer, higher ground. He further urged district officials to ensure that aid intended for those who lost their homes in the floods reaches the right hands. The prime minister confirmed that over 51,000 households have been affected by the extreme weather.

The heavy rains are not exclusive to Tanzania. Neighboring East African countries, including Burundi and Kenya, are also experiencing severe flooding. In Kenya, the death toll has reached 35, with expectations that this number will rise as the country continues to be inundated.

In Nairobi’s Mathare slum, rescue workers have recovered at least four bodies from flooded homes. Reports suggest that additional bodies have been retrieved from the Mathare River.

Kenyan President William Ruto has responded to the crisis by chairing a multi-agency flood response meeting. He has directed the National Youth Service to provide land for those displaced by the floods.