The KwaZulu-Natal government on Friday launched a bank account to receive disaster relief donations from corporates and members of the public, following the devastating storm that hit the province on October 10
During the launch held in Umhlanga, north of Durban, the Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) revealed that the storm resulted in damages of just over R2-billion.
Over 100 schools, 9 300 homes, and a number of hospitals, roads and bridges were damaged during the storm.
Sixteen people, including minors, died during the storm, according to the department.
The department also revealed that 38 people have died from natural disasters in the province between September and October this year.
A total of R470-million was needed to repair roads and bridges, R210-million to restore schools and R103-million to fix hospitals, the department said. Cogta MEC Nomusa Dube-Ncube called on businesses and individuals to assist government by contributing towards the relief donations. She said that not only money was needed but volunteers too, to help disaster management teams during the summer season.
Calls for assistance
"We need professionals as well as those who are unemployed to volunteer their skills during natural disasters. The emergency staff employed in municipalities is not enough to respond to disasters. Volunteers would also be provided with training to make sure they know how to assist when disaster strikes," she said.
She said the province usually experienced bad weather during the approaching summer season.
"For the past three years, bad weather usually intensified from 23 to 25 December. Rain and lightning usually battered the province around that time of the year," she said.
Two schoolgirls were killed by lightning last month while on their way to school in Msinga, northern KwaZulu-Natal.
Nomcebo Shabalala, 8, and Amahle Sithole, 13, were on their way to Mandlethu Primary School in Bafuthi village where they were doing grade 2 and 6, respectively.
"Those who can still donate lightning conductors can also come forward and assist families who cannot afford to buy them," Dube-Ncube said. The bank details for disaster relief donations is as follows:
Account name: KZN Cogta fund 2017
Bank Name: Absa
Account Type: Cheque
Branch: Public Sector-KZN
Branch Code: 632005