AFRICA/MADAGASCAR - After the cyclone: " phones blocked and communication is very difficult, the main damage is to crops," says to Fides the Bishop of Ambanja

Ambanja (Agenzia Fides) - Despite poor internet connections, the Bishop of Ambanja, His Exc. Mgr. Rosario Vella, managed to get in touch with Fides and communicated some information concerning cyclone Giovanna which on February 13 came from the east of Madagascar area (see Fides 14/02/2012). "The first town it encountered was Vatomandry, then Brickaville and Moramanga" says the Bishop. "These are the three cities which are mainly damaged. The wind was very strong and heavy rain hit the region. The news is not much for now: the phones are blocked and communication is very difficult. I tried to get in touch with Mgr. Gaetano Di Pierro, Bishop of Moramanga, but without success. The official reports speak of three deaths and a number of not well determined homeless. The main damage is to crops. The rice fields are flooded and it is not sure that the rice will yield its harvest. Other crops, like corn, cassava, beans, legumes, were severely damaged. The danger of famine in these areas is in ambush . The cyclone then continued its trajectory: Tananarive, Antsirabe, Morondava. The city of Tana had no electricity for most of the day. Many trees fell on the roads blocking the traffic. Likewise, the electricity poles fell and blocked the traffic. The area of Ambanja was not touched at all: we had some rain but nothing special", said Bishop Vella. (AP) (Agenzia Fides 16/2/2012)

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