Cyclone Eloise
Photo credit / Reuters

The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said Friday that it is supporting governments in southern Africa to prepare for, and respond to Tropical Cyclone Eloise.

The cyclone is expected to make landfall near Beira in central Mozambique in the early hours local time on Saturday, according to the World Meteorological Organization. This is the same area that was hit by Cyclone Idai less than two years ago.

The United Nations is concerned about the prospect of significant flooding, particularly in Mozambique, where rivers are already on alert levels and flooding has been reported in several locations ahead of Eloise’s landfall, said OCHA.

The government of Mozambique is carrying out evacuations and the United Nations and its partners have deployed personnel and supplies in advance to be ready to respond quickly, it said.

After its landfall in Mozambique, the cyclone is expected to weaken but could bring heavy rains to neighboring countries, including Zimbabwe, South Africa and Botswana, said OCHA. More funding will be urgently needed to respond to this new crisis.

Humanitarian organizations in the region are already overstretched by ongoing operations, especially in Mozambique and Zimbabwe, it said.

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