Heavy rains disrupt classes in Mat’land

Thursday, 23 February 2017  Radio Dialogue

BULAWAYO - Heavy rains that have been pounding Matabelaland provinces have severely affected schoolchildren with some of them skipping classes for some days due to flooding.

Cyclone Dineo that hit Matabeleland North and the Midlands last left some people homeless, losing properties to the floods.

In separate interviews, villagers, said the heavy rains have caused flooding and some children can not go to school.

A villager, Dingani Tshabangu, said heavy rains have resulted in some rivers overflowing, with bridges totally immersed in the water resulting in school children failing to cross to school.

“School children can not attend classes every day, they sometimes go to school once or twice a week depending on the frequency of floods on that particular week,” said Tshabangu.

“Surely parents can’t risk the lives of their children by sending them to school when rivers are flooded, so they only go to school on days when the levels have subsided.”

Another villager who spoke to Radio Dialogue, Morris Ndlovu from Nyamandlovu said only those who stay close to schools are the ones who are able to attend classes everyday.

“Its easier for those who do not need to cross any rivers or bridges, they can go to school on a daily basis,” said Ndlovu.

Another villager, Nyika Nkala, said children in early grades are the ones most affected.

“School children normally wait for river levels to go down, sometimes if it rains when they are still at school they are forced to spend the night at school.

“Grade Zeros and ones are the most affected and most of the times they stay with their grand mothers who can’t take them to school,” said Nkala.

He said the floods also affect motorists as well.

“Drivers have not been able to cross bridges due to heavy rainfall,” said Nkala.

He said bridges are too small and are covered with water during flooding therefore posing danger to crossing people and vehicles as they will not be seeing the edges.

“Most rivers are always flooded, for instance in Nsezi river the bridge is too small so during times of flooding the bridge will be immersed in water,” said Nkala.

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