Sudan declares a state of emergency due to flooding

For weeks now, Sudan has been hit by record floods. At least 99 people were killed. Hundreds of thousands of houses are uninhabitable. The government has now declared a state of emergency for three months.

The entire country in northeast Africa has been declared a natural disaster area, the Ministry of Labor said after a meeting of the Security and Defense Council. At least 99 people were killed and 46 people were injured. Overall, more than half a million people are affected by the water masses. In addition, more than 100,000 houses were damaged or destroyed, it said.

According to a report by the state news agency SUNA, it is one of the worst natural disasters in the African country in decades. North Darfur in the west of Sudan and the state of Sennar in the south are particularly affected.

The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Aid (OCHA) had already announced in Geneva on Tuesday that around 380,000 people had lost accommodation and their belongings as a result of the floods. Many of them are refugees from neighboring countries or displaced from other regions of the country.

The Nile at a record level
OCHA spokesman Jens Laerke said that the Nile in Sudan had reached the highest water level in 100 years at almost 17.5 meters. The floods are making clean water scarce in some areas. In the midst of the corona pandemic, clean water is very important in order to comply with hygiene regulations.

The infrastructure was also badly damaged. Many roads are too muddy to drive on, which makes the delivery of relief supplies almost impossible in some areas. According to OCHA, very heavy rains, especially in neighboring Ethiopia, have been causing overflowing rivers and flooding in Sudan since July.

Due to rains in Ethiopia and Uganda, the Nile floods every year in Sudan. But this year it also rained a lot in Sudan. There is currently a lot of controversy in the region about the Renaissance Dam currently being built upriver in Ethiopia. According to experts, however, it could help to better regulate the annual floods in the future.