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17 killed in Mozambique’s capital garbage dump collapse

By on February 19, 2018

At least 17 people died and several others were injured in Mozambique’s capital early on Monday when a 15-metre pile of garbage collapsed due to heavy rain and buried seven houses, officials said.

Rescue workers believe there may be more bodies buried in the 50 foot-high garbage pile located in the impoverished neighborhood of Hulene, Radio Mocambique reported.
The collapse happened at around 3 a.m. (0100 GMT) in the impoverished Hulene neighbourhood, which is around 10 km (6 miles) from the centre of Maputo.
The houses were built illegally and authorities had previously asked the residents to leave, officials said.

“Up to now, 17 dead bodies were recovered,” said Despedida Rita, a councilor for Ka Mavota Municipal District. “We fear more might be unaccounted for so we will keep searching for bodies buried underneath the rubbish pile.”

Land pressure in many African cities leads some people to squat on land they do not own as they seek higher wages available in urban centres. The dwellings are sometimes built on land that is marginal or unsafe.

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