Monday 11 December 2017

Heavy rains have killed 15 in Ivory Coast

Heavy rains have killed 15 in Ivory Coast
(AFP 06/22/17)

The heavy rains drenching Ivory Coast since May have killed at least 15 people in the economic capital Abidjan and injured over two dozen, the government said on Wednesday.

West Africa's rainy season, which lasts three to four months, regularly causes fatalities and damage across Abidjan's hillside shack communities, with 16 people killed last year and 39 in 2014.

"We are today at 15 dead and 25 hurt in total," said Communications Minister Bruno Kone.

Most of the victims lived in the shack communities which cling to hillsides that become unstable in heavy rain.

A previous toll put the number of dead at 11 with several hundred more affected.

The heavy rains also led to the collapse of a bridge into the southern city of San-Pedro, cutting it off for several days. The city hosts the second largest port in Ivory Coast, the world's top cocoa producer.

The government pointed blame for the heavy rains on "climate change and structures in high-risk areas despite the warning of previous public information campaigns."

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