Tanzania Association of Tour Operators (TATO) has stepped up an emergency relief valued at $51,200 to victims of deadly mudslides that rocked Katesh township in Hanang’ District, Manyara Region, Tanzania, early December 2023.

It rained cats and dogs in Katesh and its environs on the day, leading part of the nearby Mount Hanang to collapse, with boulders burying households and flora and fauna as they slid down the foothills to a number of villages before they reached the township.

Available data says the death toll from the mishap had reached 76 on Thursday, with rescue teams still continuing to search for bodies stuck in the mud.

Waking up to the grisly news, TATO Board was quick to call off the association’s 40th anniversary celebrations and re-allocating the members’ contributions earmarked for a diner gala slated for December 9, 2023, in Arusha, for the emergency relief.

“We’ve allocated the contributions for our Hanang’ brothers and sisters in terms of food and other amenities,” TATO Chairman Wilbard Chambulo said during the handing over of the humanitarian aid.

“Our hearts go out to those who have lost their loved ones, and we stand in solidarity with the communities grappling with the aftermath of this natural catastrophe,” the TATO Chief said before the Minister of Natural Resources and Tourism, Ms Angellah Kairuki, who received the donation on behalf of the government.

Mr Chambulo said the emergency relief comprised 37,800 litres of mineral water, 2,000 litres of cooking oil, 10 tonnes of wheat flour and 4,000 corrugated iron sheets.

“This contribution aims at providing immediate support to those in dire need for them to rebuild their lives shattered by this unfortunate incident,” he said, adding:
“TATO acknowledges the urgency of the situation and remains committed to assisting the Hanang’ communities throughout the recovery process.”

Mr Chambulo explained that the relief would address immediate nutritional, hygiene, and clothing requirements of the affected families.

Receiving the relief, Minister Kairuki extolled TATO for putting its shoulder to wheel in complimenting the government’s efforts to help restore hope and remedy the lives of affected persons.

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