Myanmar in state of emergency due to flood


Yangon: The toll in the Myanmar floods since June has gone up to 88 and affected more than 330,000 people across the nation, prompting a state of emergency.

AFP Photo
AFP Photo

Most of the deaths were reported in western Rakhine state with at least 55 deaths, Xinhua news agency quoted ministry of social welfare, relief and resettlement.

The deadly flood killed 4,650 cattle, displaced 85,400 people and destroyed 10,956 homes and more than 88,120 hectares of farmland.

Flooding has begun to move southwards and it is likely to expand and affect the southern part of the country.

The ministry of agriculture and irrigation said all dams across the country will continue to be under watch. Forty dams were releasing excess water.

Myanmar President U Thein Sein, in his radio speech to the nation, vowed that the government had made arrangements for restoring normalcy in flood-hit areas as soon as possible.

He said the government will assist farmers in ploughing their lands and provide them with seeds to grow rice.

Myanmar rice federation on Thursday decided to halt rice export until September 15 for domestic reserve in face of the severe flood.

The one-and-a-half-month freeze is said to ensure an adequate supply of rice for the domestic market and to maintain stability of rice.

Export will not be done unless rice supply is sufficient for domestic market during the period, said the federation leadership, adding that a total of 170,000 bags of rice will be purchased from private sector to store as reserve for local self-sufficiency.

According to the ministry of agriculture and irrigation, about 344,493 hectares of farmlands were submerged, of which Rakhine state suffered the most which accounted for over 105,300 hectares.

Of the four declared disaster zones namely Rakhine, Chin, Sagaing and Magway, Rakhine state was the worst hit.