Death toll from heavy rains in Rwanda climbs to 72
The death toll due to Wednesday night's heavy rains in different parts of Rwanda has reached 72, a government official said on Friday.
The government on Thursday said the downpour killed 65 people in Western and Northern provinces.
Dozens of people were left homeless, and most of them sought temporary shelters in schools and were offered bedding and foodstuff as the government embarked on relocating them to safer places, Olivier Kayumba, permanent secretary of the Ministry in charge of Emergency Management, told a live news program on Rwanda Television (RTV).
He said more than 90 houses and five bridges were destroyed while hectares of crops were submerged.
On Thursday, Minister of Local Government Anastase Shyaka told RTV that more than 8,000 people countrywide have been relocated from high-risk zones that are prone to landslides and flooding in the past three weeks.
The Rwanda Meteorology Agency in February forecast "above-normal" rainfall countrywide during the rainy season from March to May.
In a disaster update released on March 6, the ministry in charge of emergency management said 53 people were killed while 84 others were injured due to disasters triggered by heavy rains in different parts of Rwanda since January.
More than 850 houses, eight churches, 23 roads, 17 bridges were also destroyed, it said. (Xinhua)