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Is southern Africa drought drying up Victoria Falls?

27 November 2019 12:21 PM
Tags:
Zimbabwe drought
Victoria Falls
Southern Africa drought
Harare-based BBC journalist Shingai Nyoka gives a first-hand account of the devastating effect of the drought on Zimbabwe.

It's known as "The Smoke that Thunders" but as the drought in southern Africa takes its toll, Victoria Falls on the border of Zimbabwe and Zambia is no longer thundering as majestically as before.

It's reported that the water flow over the iconic falls has dropped from 2,000 cubic metres per second to about 1,200 cubic metres.

Victoria Falls during dry season. Picture: Victoriafallstourism.org.

CapeTalk's Africa Melane speaks to Harare-based BBC journalist Shingai Nyoka about the devastating impact of the drought.

RELATED: Weather data suggests drought, heat and a poor harvest likely across SA

With Victoria Falls as this great tourist wonder there are questions of what long-term impact this will have. It's quite devastating for us as Zimbabweans as well as Zambians who just took such pride in this feature.

Shingai Nyoka | BBC Journalist

For Zimbabwe in particular it's been devastating because it's compounded by the economic crisis. It's the worst drought in living memory.

Shingai Nyoka, BBC Journalist

Nyoko also highlights the impact on wildlife in Zimbabwe's national parks.

The numbers are quite astounding coming out of the national parks authority - about 200 elephants have died at Hwange National Park and the images of these huge jumbos and their babies, dried-up carcasses because they haven't been able to find water...

Shingai Nyoka | BBC Journalist

It's not just the elephants, it's also your buffalo, your lion, your birds, so it has really had a devastating effect on the ecosystem up north but also in the south there's a drought as well.

Shingai Nyoka | BBC Journalist

Nyoka says the drought is raising questions about the future of tourism in the country, while the average Zimbabwean is struggling to find food to eat.

She says there are conflicting predictions about the outlook for the rainy season.

The rains have been coming over the last three weeks or so, even though they were late. People have started to plant but I think the prayer and the hope is that these rains will continue to March so that people do have enough food to eat.

Shingai Nyoka | BBC Journalist

Listen to the sobering conversation here:


27 November 2019 12:21 PM
Tags:
Zimbabwe drought
Victoria Falls
Southern Africa drought

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