Myanmar floods force tens of thousands from homes

By AFP

SHWEGYIN — Floods across Myanmar have forced tens of thousands of people from their homes in recent weeks, officials said Thursday, as monsoon rains pummel the nation.

Aerial images from Shwegyin Township in Bago region showed how the area had become a vast lake of water.

Only the rooftops could be seen of many homes lining the Sittaung River.

Emergency services have been helping bring people to dry ground, many seeking shelter in local monasteries.

Support more independent journalism like this. Sign up to be a Frontier member.

Others waded through waist-deep floodwaters or rowed on wooden boats with pets and any belongings they could take with them.

U Than Aye, 42, who has diabetes and is partially-sighted, struggled to escape the deluge.

“I could not do anything when the flooding started but then the fire service came to rescue me by boat,” he told AFP from the safety of the monastery that has been his home for the last five days.

The most severe flooding is currently in eastern Bago Region and Mon and Karen states, according to the social welfare ministry.

“There are currently over 30,000 people [across the country] displaced by floods,” said director general of disaster management U Ko Ko Naing.

The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) estimates around 89,000 people have been displaced in recent weeks, although many have since been able to return home.

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on email

More stories

Latest Issue

Stories in this issue
Respect the election result, but don’t gloss over the flaws
The large turnout on November 8 powerfully demonstrated society’s commitment to democracy, but this should not overshadow deep flaws in the electoral process that threaten to undermine future progress.
Image, strategy and friends with money: How the NLD did it again
Trust in Aung San Suu Kyi, a tight social media strategy and help from business leaders were among the factors behind the National League for Democracy’s landslide election win.

Stay on top of Myanmar current affairs with our Daily Briefing and Media Monitor newsletters

Our fortnightly magazine is available in print, digital, or a combination beginning at $80 a year

Sign up for our Frontier Fridays newsletter. It’s a free weekly round-up featuring the most important events shaping Myanmar