Ramaphosa Insurrection Mapisa-Nqakula

Minister of Defence Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula briefs media on Covid-19 epidemic at OR Tambo building, Pretoria [Photo: DIRCO]

KZN floods: Parliament WILL be involved in State of Disaster response

President Cyril Ramaphosa declared a national state of disaster to ensure an effective response by government to the KZN floods

Ramaphosa Insurrection Mapisa-Nqakula

Minister of Defence Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula briefs media on Covid-19 epidemic at OR Tambo building, Pretoria [Photo: DIRCO]

Parliament has announced the establishment of an Ad Hoc Committee that will provide oversight on the National State of Disaster, which was declared in the wake of devastating floods in KwaZulu-Natal and the Eastern Cape.

The National State of Disaster was announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa on Monday. The president says the declaration is to ensure an effective response by government to the extreme weather events, including in other parts of the country where destructive conditions had been anticipated.

Heavy rainfall has left behind a trail of destruction in KZN, prompting government to declare a state of disaster in that province. More than 4 000 homes and other infrastructure have been damaged or washed away, while nearly 450 people have lost their lives.

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AD HOC COMMITTEE TO PROVIDE OVERIGHT ON STATE OF DISASTER

Speaking on Thursday, 21 April 2022, Parliamentary Speaker Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula said the committee will be formed on Tuesday – the same day the president will address a special joint sitting.

“On 18 April, I received a letter from the Chief Whip, proposing for the establishment of an Ad Hoc Committee that will exercise oversight on the State of Disaster in KwaZulu-Natal. I’m informed that the matter was discussed in the Chief Whips’ forum. There is an understanding that the National Assembly will establish the Ad Hoc Committee on 26 April”

Parliamentary Speaker Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula

While a provincial state of disaster was declared in KZN to help the provincial government further respond to the floods, Ramaphosa said this is not enough as other parts of the country will need intervention as well.

“It is clear that there are other areas of the country that need emergency intervention as well. Cabinet met in a special session last night and decided to declare a national state of disaster. The minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs has been mandated to gazette the national state of disaster. This is to ensure an effective response across all spheres of government to extreme weather events and conditions that have occurred in several parts of the country,” he said.