Mbabane: Much more than predicted Tropical Cyclone Eloise has wrecked more havoc, leaving Eswatini’s capital Mbabane sinking in floods after the heavy rains.
Most sections of the country have been greatly affected as the cyclone continued to cause havoc over the weekend.
Officials from the Eswatini Meteorology Services had earlier on hinted that Eswatini has been spared from the cyclone and will not much be affected, but what hit Eswatini was much more than anticipated.
Disturbing pictures were seen on Sunday and Monday showing most of the major roads in the country flooded. In some parts of the country, bridges were broken and cars could not cross over to the other side.
The capital city Mbabane which had poor drainage systems as it has earlier been reported by media had the Swazi Plaza and the Mall in Mbabane flooded, with Shops like Power Fashion Factory and Pick n Pay as well as most of the shops with water inside destroying stock. Mbabane Super Spar was among the shops affected as pictures could show shopping trolleys floating in water.
On Sunday afternoon a popular traditional healer’s car was swept by water while trying to cross over a bridge in Big Bend, Mndobandoba area. At least two were reportedly dead after that incident, two escaped the floods and were rescued.
Sources close to the matter confirmed those who died to be a local traditional healer Elliot ‘Black Cat’ Fakudze and a 30 years old lady described as Qiniso Dlamini who had got a lift from Fakudze heading home from work in Matata.
Royal Eswatini Police Services (REPS) have been on high alert, as on Sunday the service had earlier issued a list of roads which were already damaged and flooded advising motorist not to use those routes.
The northern part of the country Hhohho had so many incidents of floods and roadside landslides. In Siphocisini about 10km from the capital city Mbabane, the road was reportedly blocked as there were disturbing landslides, rocks had fallen into the road blocking any vehicle from crossing the roads.
Many incidents of damaged roads and bridges were also seen and reported by residents. Speaking on the national radio on Monday morning, the police spokesperson, Phindile Vilakati warned EmaSwati to drive safely with caution on the roads as most of the roads were damaged and needed urgent attention.
On Monday afternoon the police issued a warning informing motorist that a bridge along Maphiveni/ Tabankulu had been seriously damaged and on the verge of collapsing. The police advised motorist to stay away and avoid it. The law enforcement also urged road uses to exercise caution while efforts to clear the obstacles around the country roads were in progress.
“The key is to drive low speed and be on the lookout for any water ponds and other obstacles that maybe on the roads”.
By the time of compiling this report the cyclone has reportedly claimed two lives in the Lubombo Region.
The weather services warned that the rains are still expected to continue by not so much stronger as they were over the weekend.