Heavy rains which hit several parts across Rwanda on Tuesday night had killed at least three people before destroying farms and sweeping away five homes, a senior government official said on Wednesday.The Permanent Secretary in the Rwandan ministry of Disaster management and Refugees Affairs, Olivier Kayumba explained that among the most affected districts are Karongi and Rusizi in Western Province and Nyarugenge in Kigali city.
Reports indicated that in Nyarugenge district heavy rains triggered a landslide which destroyed a house, killing one occupant while in Rusizi and Karongi districts two of the victims died after a house they were sleeping in collapsed.
Kayumba promised the government’s support to the victims, saying an arrangement has been made for relief materials to be distributed to them.
The disaster occurred a few months after Rwandan authorities began demolishing homes in Kigali which they say are threatened by “climate dangers” especially in the capital and its outskirts.
Latest figures from the Ministry of Emergency Management (MINEMA) show that 70 people died countrywide between January and September 2019, due to natural disasters in Rwanda.
Estimates also show that 177 people were injured during the same period, with 4,095 houses damaged, 6,708 hectares of crops destroyed, and 167 livestock killed.
In addition, reports indicate that disasters – mainly floods, landslides, and lightning strikes – killed 234 people and injured 268 others.
In 2018, Rwanda lost Rwf 204 billion ($224 million) due to disasters, while the damages for 2017 was estimated at a whopping $73 million in monetary terms.