Floods hit Somali city of Kismayo

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Addis Ababa, 8 June 2014 (WIC) - Internally displaced persons in Kismayo, a port city 528 km Southwest of the Somali Capital Mogadishu are appealing for immediate help after being hit by flash floods.

According to a press release AMISOM Public Information Service sent to WIC, the floods have submerged their makeshift structures, killing 3 children within one week.
At the Tawakal IDP camp, over 350 families majority of whose members are children and women have been left homeless, spending the nights in the cold without food and shelter as the rains continue.

Shankaron Sidi, a mother of four says she has been overwhelmed by the effects of the floods, having to sustain her family, which has endured the floods for over a week.
“We sleep in the water. I have 4 children and we have spent 8 consecutive nights in the water. We are homeless day and night. We don’t know what to do, so if you can do something for us, please do it,” she appeals.

The floods have disrupted life at the camp, leaving the residents unable to engage in any activities, other than fighting for their lives and property.

“Heavy floods took us by surprise. We don’t have shelter, school or Qoranic school. We are starving. In the night, we stay in the water and we do not have a place to sleep. We are suffering a lot and ask all brothers in the Moslem world to offer us help,” appeals Abdurahman Osman Abdi.

The Interim Juba Administration leader Ahmed Mohamed together AMISOM officers have visited the affected IDP camps to assess the situation. The administration has identified high grounds where the IDPs will be moved tentatively.
Nur Omar, a senior Juba administration official says some food has been sent to assist the displaced persons though much more effort is needed.

“The floods which flashed in last Monday killed him and the second rains have come while we are still in this camp. Too many children are dying; they don’t have medicine and no shelter. The president of Jubba Administration has sent us some food through the businessmen,” he says.

The AMISOM assessment team was led by Captain Salim Mohamed from Kenya Defense Forces and the areas covered by the assessment include the state of the IDP camps, the roads some of which have been rendered impassable as well as the social amenities.

Although Kismayo city is relatively peaceful since IJA security forces and AMISOM captured it from al-Shabaab in September 2012, the humanitarian needs of the population remain vast with both the population and its leadership appealing for immediate help.