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Two dead as flood waters sweep Sagaing

A villager in Depayin, Sagaing Division wades through flood waters. (PHOTO: DVB)

At least two persons have been killed as flash floods sweep central Burma.

As many as 150 towns in lower Sagaing Division have been inundated, impacting as many as 10,000 people.

In the Depayin district of Shwebo, homes and farms are under five feet of water. Local residents said they are desperate for help, which has not yet arrived.

“I heard that an embankment collapsed but that’s according to what others said – I didn’t see for myself,” said villager Win Nwe Cho.

“As of now, we have received no assistance whatsoever. We have no place to cook and food is running low – we can only give our children some snacks for meal. I would be very grateful to receive government aid materials.”

Children and the elderly have left for higher ground, as farmers have moved their livestock from their low-lying fields.

The Sagaing Division area close to the Irrawaddy River is a crucial rice-producing region. Farmers here must bounce back quickly, as a possible rice-shortage looms.

“We are devastated after our paddy crops were destroyed in the floods,” said Than Oo.

“As almost all of the nurseries in the area were substantially damaged, we are very stressed and have no idea how we can restart cultivation. If the related government departments provide us paddy seeds and assistance to resume our work, I would be delighted.”

Naypyidaw says 40,000 acres of farmland have been affected, prompting President Thein Sein and army chief Snr-Gen Min Aung Hlaing to tour the flood-hit town of Kantbalu where Burmese army troops are assisting in relief efforts.