Rainstorms near Nile damage thousands of Sudanese homes

Flooding and torrential rain have caused death and disruption in various areas of the country

A cow stands in a flooded field in the al-Qanaa village in Sudan's southern White Nile state on September 14, 2021.  AFP
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Five thousand Sudanese families face displacement after their homes were damaged due to torrential rain and flooding, local news reports said on Thursday.

Heavy rainstorms fell in various regions of the country; in the River Nile state, Khartoum, El Gezira and South Darfur. There was extensive damage to buildings, agricultural projects and main roads linking a number of villages to the capital were cut off.

The River Nile state Civil Defence Department said two female bodies had been found on Thursday after they were reported missing.

They were on a tourist bus that was swept away by the river north of Shendi as it travelled between Khartoum and Port Sudan on Tuesday.

Some of the passengers were rescued but there are still many people missing, the department said, adding that it expected to find more bodies in the coming days.

The United Nations estimates that at least six people have been killed and 28,000 have been affected by flooding in Central Darfur in the past week.

“The rainy season usually lasts up to September, with the peak of rains and flooding observed between August and September”, the UN office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs in Sudan (OCHA) said.

“At least six people died, and an unconfirmed number of people were injured when their houses collapsed due to the heavy rains or were washed away by the flash floods,” OCHA said in a statement.

Approximately 2,800 houses were destroyed, and more than 1,620 houses were damaged, it said.

“Rains and floods also damaged 63 water sources, 73 wells, as well as an unconfirmed number of farms, affecting people’s livelihoods,” it said.

The UN agency said nearly 38,000 people across the country have been affected by heavy rains and flooding since the rainy season began in May.

Human rights activist Bakri Al Tom said people were living in difficult humanitarian and health conditions because there is limited access to the affected areas.

He said “the accumulation of water has led to the spread of harmful insects. More than 15 villages were affected around the city of Barir, 311km north of Khartoum, in addition to dozens of villages around the cities of Damer and Shendi.”

Updated: August 11, 2022, 1:48 PM