Co-operative governance and traditional affairs (Cogta) minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma has gazetted regulations for the national state of disaster prompted by devastating floods in KwaZulu-Natal and the Eastern Cape that have claimed more than 400 lives.
The gazette published on Monday said special circumstances exist to warrant the declaration of a state of disaster in line with section 3 of the Disaster Management Act.
This comes after President Cyril Ramaphosa on Monday night declared the heavy rains, which have damaged property and infrastructure and led to sinkholes and landslides, as a state of national disaster as the government battles to implement recovery and reconstruction plans.
The gazette states that organs of state may, when required, make regulations and issue directions or authorise directions concerning the following:
- assisting and protecting the public;
- providing relief to the public;
- protecting property;
- preventing or combating disruption; or
- dealing with the destructive nature and other effects of the disaster
Ramaphosa said the declaration was meant to boost existing measures undertaken by organs of state to deal with the disaster and allow for the mobilisation of resources to support interventions in the affected provinces.
“This is a humanitarian disaster that calls for a massive and urgent relief effort,” he said
A ravine opened beneath this house in Umdloti, north of Durban, one of the hardest-hit towns, in the flooding. File photo.