Members of the US army help load supplies at Beira International airport, Mozambique. Dirco on Wednesday said that relief donations from South Africa had been handed over to the people of Mozambique, Malawi following the devastation wreaked by Idai. File photo: AP Photo/Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi.

JOHANNESBURG - The Department of International Relations and Cooperation said on Wednesday that relief donations from South African companies, religious organisations and ordinary South Africans had been handed over to the people of Mozambique and Malawi following the devastation wreaked by Cyclone Idai.

Dirco spokesperson Ndivhuwo Mabaya said that on Tuesday members of the South African National Defence Force departed from the Waterkloof Air Force Base with various donated items which included clothes, blankets, water purifiers and dry food. Also included in the consignment was medical supplies donated by the department of health.

“Over the years, we as Africans have been known to join forces or stand shoulder to shoulder in times of need. As we come to terms with the unprecedented humanitarian disaster left in the wake of Cyclone Idai in Malawi, Zimbabwe and Mozambique, we have once again come together to respond to the urgent needs of the brothers and sisters in our neighbouring countries,” said Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Lindiwe Sisulu.

“We remain indebted to all South Africans who have heeded the call for urgent relief donations. You have demonstrated the true spirit of Ubuntu. A large number of communities have been affected by this and continued assistance will be required for a while. We, therefore, appeal to everyone to continue donating towards this just cause."

Receiving the donations, Malawi’s Minister of Homeland Security and Disaster Management Affairs Nicholas Dausi said: “We thank the people and government of South Africa for coming to assist in our time of need. These supplies came at the right time and will go a long way in assisting our people.”

Mabaya said the handover event ceremony in Malawi was also attended by members of the Diplomatic Corps within the country, which included country representatives from South Africa, the United States of America, Germany, United Kingdom, Japan, Zambia, Tanzania and Norway.

African News Agency (ANA)