Maputo — Mozambique’s National Roads Administration (ANE) has announced that it will use two metallic bridges to carry traffic over the Montepuez and Messalo rivers, thus restoring overland communication between the southern and northern regions of Cabo Delgado province.
The bridge over the Montepuez river, in Quissanga district, collapsed last Saturday stranding travellers on both banks of the river. Two boats were deployed on Monday morning to ferry people across the swollen river.
Also on Monday, the torrential rains in Cabo Delgado swept away the bridge over the Messalo river on the same road, in Muidumbe district.
The ANE delegate in Cabo Delgado, Robate Jane, cited in Friday’s issue of the Maputo daily “Noticias”, said the two metallic bridges are being moved from the neighbouring province of Niassa. They are a temporary solution that will allow traffic to cross the two rivers, while definitive work is undertaken to repair the bridges.
At a Thursday meeting in the provincial capital, Pemba, of the Cabo Delgado Provincial Emergency Operations Centre (COE), Jane said contractors have been mobilised to assess the requirements for rebuilding the bridges.
At the same meeting, the provincial delegate of the Mozambican relief agency, the National Disaster Management Institute (INGC), Elizete Manuel, said the torrential rains have destroyed or damaged the homes of 10,000 people, and 391 hectares of crops have been lost.
The people affected, Manuel said, require 30 tonnes of maize and bean seeds in order to replant.
The rains have now slackened and so the level of the rivers in Cabo Delgado is dropping. The outgoing provincial governor, Julio Parruque, who chaired the meeting, stressed the need to maintain vigilance, since rain is continuing to fall further upstream.
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