DA KZN urges declaration of disaster areas following devastating storm

Issued by Francois Rodgers, MPL – DA KZN Provincial Leader
05 Jun 2024 in Press Statements

The Democratic Alliance in KwaZulu-Natal extends its sincere condolences to the victims of the recent storm. We are calling for the declaration of disaster areas in regions ravaged by last night’s severe storm and will be writing to the KZN Director General to formalise this request.

An oversight earlier today led by Provincial Leader, Francois Rodgers, DA KZN Spokesperson, Martin Meyer and local Councillors revealed total carnage which claimed at least 5 lives, left over a thousand people homeless, while hundreds of homes have been badly damaged.

More worrying is that the provincial government seems to have learned few lessons from past natural disasters, like the storm that devastated areas such as Tongaat, the Magwaveni informal settlement, and La Mercy last night.

Our oversight exposed a significant lack of lifesaving interventions such as:

  • Lack of an early warning system
  • Lack of evacuation plan
  • Lack of priority of injured persons
  • Lack of proactive approach coupled with a slow response several hours later

The DA also condemns the more than 12-hour delayed response by provincial authorities which is indicative of a government that sits on its hands while devastation unfolds before realizing the impact of each passing hour.

Declaring the affected communities as disaster areas will allow for much-needed relief intervention to be released swiftly.

The DA in KZN will be engaging our colleagues on both a provincial and national government level to determine the level of assistance that can be offered.