Cyclone Idai to hit Zimbabwe

Malawi floods kill 56, over 80000 displaced as cyclone approaches

The floods in Mozambique, one of Africa's poorest countries, have already destroyed 5 756 homes, affecting 15 467 households and 141 325 people.

The UN warned that cyclone Idai would bring strong winds, heavy rains and storm surges which would likely last through the weekend.

The storm is expected to make landfall Thursday night near Beira, Mozambique's fourth largest city, with 530,000 residents.

The category 4 cyclone is due to make landfall on Thursday afternoon.

South African officials are working with their counterparts in Mozambique through the National Joint Operations Centre to share information on the storm and its likely impact.

"Most of the displaced families are living in camps", Khamula said.

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Moreover, heavy rains, flash floods, and high velocity winds will remain a highlight throughout the storm's lifespan.

The MSD said Tropical Cyclone Idai is expected to take a north-westerly direction moving further inland and reaching some parts of the country.

Idai is expected to weaken into an overland depression on Friday but is still expected to result in significant and torrential rainfall and widespread flooding over the Sofala and Manica provinces of Mozambique.

Tropical cyclones spin clockwise in the Southern Hemisphere, putting the city of half a million on the extremely unsafe and more intense side of the storm's eyewall, the zone of most powerful winds and where storm surge is maximized.

Winds of 167 km/h have accompanied the tropical storm IDAI.

A major port city on the coast of southeast Africa is bracing for a direct hit from a powerful tropical cyclone - in a situation the World Meteorological Organization has called a "potential worst case scenario". Rapid needs assessments are ongoing in the areas hardest-hit by rains and flooding to verify initial estimates regarding the number of people affected and determine the number of people in need of immediate humanitarian assistance.

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