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Musa Simelane (Communications Assistant)
BIG-BEND – Joy and relief was written on the faces of 40 Cyclone Eloise flood victims when they saw an NDMA truck pull into their residential area Game Five last week Thursday. The truck was filled with lots of ‘goodies’, that is to say household essentials such as mattresses, daily hygiene items like soap and toothpaste, toiletries for women, 25 litre jerry cans, baby diapers, toys and even blankets. The items were so many that no one person could carry it all, especially because on the same day the UNFPA had also partnered with NDMA to donate diapers and 20 litre buckets full of essentials for mothers with small babies. Just two months ago, all was doom and gloom for the Game Five residents after Usuthu River flooded their homes and destroyed their household belongings. The flood was a result of a storm fueled by the tropical cyclone which came from the Indian Ocean through Mozambique. The disaster struck at night when most residents had just gone to bed. It was so sudden that they could only save their lives than anything else. The National Disaster Management Agency (NDMA) evacuated the affected residents and placed them at Mahlabaneni Primary School as temporary shelter. The agency also provided food aid among other things.