KWAZULU-NATAL Premier Willies Mchunu, with Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs MEC Nomusa Dube-Ncube, announced at a media briefing yesterday that the recent storm damage to infrastructure in the province was R1.1 billion. KZNCOGTA Twitter
DURBAN - The estimated cost of infrastructural damage in KwaZulu-Natal from the recent floods is expected to be R1.1billion.

This was according to KZN premier Willies Mchunu, who yesterday hosted a press briefing on provincial cabinet resolutions in respect of the damaging downpours.

Mchunu said the damage in eThekwini alone amounted to more than R685million. He said the death toll stood at 70, with 64 of those coming from eThekwini Municipality.

“Rains in the Ugu district claimed the lives of six people, with 1469 displaced and more than 50 people injured. The search for two more people is ongoing,” he said.

Mchunu has declared Thursday a day of mourning and prayer. A mass prayer meeting will take place at Currie’s Fountain, Berea, from 9am.

Mchunu said the KZN cabinet met on Friday to seek classification of the provincial state of disaster as they could not cope with the incidents as a province.

“We also requested that buildings to be used in the upcoming elections be restored, and for emergency funding to be readily available given the magnitude of the disaster,” he said.

A single provincial account would be established, which would be led by the Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) and provincial treasury.

Mchunu said local government had provided food, blankets, mattresses and other much-needed items to flood-stricken residents.

He said the Department of Home Affairs was working to fast-track the issuing of identity documents and documentation for families.

Cogta MEC in KZN, Nomusa Dube-Ncube, applauded residents who were offering aid to those affected by the floods, but she appealed for open lines of communication between communities and residents.

“You find that some areas have an oversupply and others have an under supply.

“There are task teams in place to assist, and those wanting to help can find out where assistance can be rendered and what items are needed,” she said.

For those wanting to track down missing loved ones, there is a dedicated support desk at the eThekwini Disaster Management Centre to assist families. The contact number is 0333952547.

THE MERCURY