MEC Ismail Vadi on flash floods in Gauteng

Member's statement, Gauteng Provincial Legislature - flash floods in Gauteng

I rise in terms of Rule 82.2 to make a statement on behalf of the Gauteng Provincial Government on the devastation caused in our communities by the on-going flash floods and rain storms in Gauteng.

Over the past few days, large parts of our province, including the OR Tambo International Airport, experienced severe rain storms, which in some instances caused extensive damage to public infrastructure, homes and cars. Thankfully, the flash floods did not cause any structural damage to our roads network.

Sadly though, a number of lives, including that of a little child, have been lost. The Gauteng Provincial Government expresses its sincerest condolences to the families and friends of the deceased.

Premier David Makhura is seriously considering declaring some affected parts of Gauteng as disaster areas so that government can tap into all available resources to assist those adversely affected by the floods.

In the meantime, through the tireless efforts of the Departments of Human Settlements, Community Safety, Health, Social Development and local municipalities, displaced residents are being temporarily accommodated in churches and community centres. Government departments and emergency services, together with the sterling support of charitable and welfare organisations, are providing immediate relief to residents.

Moving forward, government will ensure that people who are informally settled along river banks are moved to formal areas to prevent the risks associated with such living patterns.

Residents living next to rivers and streams are urged to evacuate to a safer place and those living in low lying areas must avoid crossing flooded bridges and rivers. Motorists and pedestrians should take extra care on our roads and avoid crossing through flooded routes.

The Gauteng Provincial Government would like to thank the provincial and local government disaster management teams as well as rescue services linked to the private sector, who have been doing a great job in assisting residents in distress.

In particular, we would like to acknowledge the bravery and heroism of ordinary civilians, who reached out to their compatriots in their moments of need on the first days of the flash floods. We sincerely thank you for your courage and caring attitude.

Source: Government of South Africa.

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