The United Kingdom has united with the people of Malawi, Mozambique and Zimbabwe in the aftermath of cyclone Idai with a US$23 million financial aid. In her condolence letters to presidents of the three southern African countries ravaged by cyclone Idai in the past week, the British Royal family, led by Queen Elizabeth II affirmed its commitment towards ensuring that families are reunited. The Queen also commended the unity shown by the people of Malawi, Mozambique and Zimbabwe in assisting the vulnerable families during this difficult time.

This US$23 million commitment by the United Kingdom is the largest bilateral donation to the region to date in response to Cyclone Idai.

Putting its Brexit challenges and political differences aside, the United Kingdom has led the way in assisting the three vulnerable African countries from cyclone Idai’s humanitarian disaster. According to official death tolls, Mozambique has recorded 242 deaths from the storm and resulting floods. In Zimbabwe, around 142 were killed while Malawi recorded 56 deaths. This death toll is expected to rise significantly as several people are still missing after villages and townships were razed by heavy rainfall and flooding which literally created an inland water body in former dwelling places. In Mozambique alone, more than 15,000 people are still missing, Land and Environment Minister Celso Correia reported on Thursday.

One week after cyclone Idai’s spell, the situation remains torrid in Beira in Mozambique as inaccessible residents run out of food, water and basic essentials. Latest reports suggest that the US army may be deployed to assist in responsive efforts to the cyclone which destroyed lives, infrastructure and ecosystems in Malawi, Mozambique and Chimanimani.