June 5, 2019 / 11:22 AM / 3 months ago

Five dead, dozens feared missing after landslides in Uganda

KAMPALA (Reuters) - Landslides after heavy rains in eastern Uganda have killed at least five people and dozens more are missing, the country’s Red Cross said on Wednesday.

The Prime Minister’s office confirmed the death toll of five and said an unconfirmed number of people were missing.

“There’s a team of Red Cross and OPM and local authorities on the ground in a rescue operation,” said Julius Mucunguzi, spokesman for the office of the prime minister.

People in precarious and vulnerable areas should immediately evacuate and shelter with relatives who are in more secure grounds, he added.

Three serious landslides occurred in the Bududa district that borders Kenya after an onslaught of rain began on Tuesday night, the Red Cross said in a statement.

The five people confirmed dead range in age from 4 to 73 years old, and their bodies were recovered by Red Cross volunteers and local police, it said.

The area where the landslides occurred lies on the steep slopes of Mount Elgon and accessibility to the affected areas is an ongoing challenge, the Red Cross said, adding that more rains were expected.

Reporting by Elias Biryabarema; Writing by Maggie Fick

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