MNOTHO Mlotshwa was found dead after his uMlazi, Durban, home collapsed on him. File photo: Mcebo Mpungose.

Durban - The IFP said it was saddened by the deaths of more than 50 people who have lost their lives through the violent storms that hit Durban this week.

Heavy rains swept through the greater Durban area from Monday night, leaving a trail of destruction. The heavy rain has claimed at least 51 lives, but the Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs MEC Nomusa Dube-Ncube, said they expected the death toll to rise as some people were still missing.

Businesses in Durban were also adversely affected as many employees were advised to stay home on Tuesday as many roads around the city were blocked due to flooding.

IFP leader Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi led a delegation as the party visited and donated food to families affected by the storm at an informal settlement in Reservoir Hills.

He said the government’s human settlements departments had a lot to answer for. In Umlazi, south of Durban, several low cost houses were swept away in the storm, killing several people around the township. Retaining walls in the low cost housing settlements also collapsed, crushing several people to death around the township. 

“Human Settlements has much to answer for over the appalling placement and conditions of RDP houses that collapsed in many areas. The damage to roads and bridges as a result of the storms could have been prevented if the appropriate preventative measures were put in place,” he said.

The IFP called on people in the Eastern Cape to exercise caution after the South African Weather Service issued a flood warning there.

“We would like to commend the efforts of the emergency response services and also the private individuals who came to the aid of the scores of residents in the Durban area that have been displaced after their homes were damaged during the floods. We thank those who have come out to offer and provide assistance to the bereaved families,” said the IFP.

“This not being the first time that these areas have experienced this level of flooding in Durban, it is reasonable to expect that some measures should have been installed to prevent the damage to the roads and drainage system. Damage should not be as severe as we have seen in the past few days,” the party said.

Independent On Saturday