THE mention of a tropical cyclone to Chimanimani and Chipinge folk brings horrid memories.
The people of Chimanimani and Chipinge were on the receiving side during Tropical Cyclone Idai, which they lost more than 250 relatives and friends and also left thousand others injured and homeless. Cyclone Idai hit the area in March 2019.
The loss of livelihood wasn’t a thing to joke about in Chimanimani and Chipinge. Some are still nursing the wounds of lost livelihoods. The people there no longer trust anything called a tropical storm or cyclone.
February 2023 was rocked with the news of the coming of Tropical Cyclone Freddy which first hit the Indian Ocean island of Madagascar and left 7 people dead.
It later affected the Inhambane Province in Mozambique when it left a trail of disaster. It was claimed to hit Zimbabwe as well.
The waters of Tropical Cyclone Freddy reached Chipinge and Chimanimani on Saturday (Febraury 25) evening. It went through Sunday 26 February and the early morning of Monday 27 February.
It was on Friday that Freddy blew some roofs of houses in scattered areas such as Chipinge East and Chichichi, south of Chimanimani.
As we go to publish, there was no confirmed casualty in the two districts. Only one man is reported to have died when a tree fell upon him in Shamva (northern Zimbabwe). Sorry!
To Chipinge and Chimanimani people, Tropical Cyclone Freddy can be termed “friendly” since it spared them from experiencing a Tropical Cyclone Idai scenario of lossing life, property and livelihoods. People are really relieved in the two districts and are thanking the heavens for sparing them from another disaster.
As the cyclone is fading slowly day by day, the peasants in the two districts are warming up to attend to their maize and sweet potato fields or banana, pineapple and macadamia nuts plantations where their livelihoods are tied to.