Devastation after rainfall

Canaan Mdletshe

Canaan Mdletshe

Several regions ravaged by storms in northern KwaZulu- Natal on Saturday are set to be declared disaster areas.

Yesterday housing and local government MEC Mike Mabuyakhulu, welfare MEC Meshack Hadebe and health MEC Peggy Nkonyeni visited the areas of Utrecht, Mondlo, Newcastle and Osizweni to assess the damage.

Mthatheni Mabaso, Mabuyakhulu's spokesman, said that the MEC's visit would provide him with first-hand knowledge of the devastation.

"He will have to decide if the area should be declared a district, provincial or national disaster area," said Mabaso.

The torrential rains, accompanied by fierce winds and hailstorms, have left more than 800 people homeless and damaged a sports stadium.

Among the worst hit was Blaaubosch, near Newcastle.

A resident, Elizabeth Dlamini, was taken to hospital after a tree fell on her home. She suffered a broken arm.

Another resident, Ntombikayise Nkosi, together with her four grandchildren, survived the storm, but their homes were completely destroyed.

l Most of the homeless people have already been provided with tents for temporary shelter.

Food supplies are being provided by the local municipality.