Daviz Simango is one of Mozambique‘s most influential politicians.
But last year when yet another flood inundated Beira, the coastal city he has served as mayor since 2003, he felt powerless.
“Disasters like that happen all the time in our city but last year was the worst for me – it felt like we’re trapped in an endless cycle of disaster after disaster,” Simango said.
A major problem is that the city buried and built over the Chiveve tidal river was built over during the 1960s, a “big mistake of the past,” said Simango.
The city is correcting the engineering and urban planning mistake now by restoring the Chiveve. They are doing it with the help of of 13 million euros ($14.4 million) from German development Bank KfW.
The project is due to be completed towards the end of 2016.
The river is being cleared of rubbish and its original course restored to provide a natural drainage system during floods and storm surges from climate change and sea level rise.
Photo of Beira courtesy www.mozambique.co.za