Uganda: Nine dead, many missing due to floods

At least 9 people have died and many are missing after the devastating floods

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At least nine people have died and many are missing after devastating floods caused by heavy rains and overflowing rivers in Bale, eastern Uganda, officials said on Sunday.

Police and the military are involved in search and rescue operations in the city, where residents watched helplessly as the waters swallowed their properties.

According to the commissioner of Bale, Ahamada Wasaki, nine bodies have been recovered so far, including that of a soldier.

"Many other people are missing and we fear they are dead," he told AFP. "We have a lot of damage, roads cut off, buildings submerged under water after the heavy rains that started last night and lasted until the morning."

The situation worsened when two rivers overflowed, flooding most of the city's districts, he said.

Prime Minister Robina Nabanja visited Bale, about 300 kilometers east of the capital Kampala, yesterday.

"Police and Navy forces will come to assist in the investigation" and "we will offer assistance to the affected citizens," she said, according to a statement from her services.

Journalists in the area said they saw floating bodies being pulled from the muddy waters by police.

Many cars were swept away by the waters. Many residents were forced to flee to higher altitude areas for safety.

"We have experienced floods in the past, but we did not have the level of loss of life and destruction of property that we are seeing this time," Commissioner Wasaki emphasized yesterday.

Source: RES-EAP