The eruption of the Nyiragongo volcano caused the death of 15 people, 9 of whom were killed in a traffic accident and 2 burned by the lava. This is the provisional toll established by the Congolese government after the eruption of the Nyiragongo volcano on Saturday in Goma, in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo.
« The provisional toll is about 15 dead, 9 of them as a result of a traffic accident while the population was being evacuated to Sake. 4 prisoners who tried to escape from the Munzenze prison were caught and it ended with the death of 4. The other two people are burned this morning, » said Patrick Muyaya, Minister of Information and Communication, spokesman for the Government, during a press conference on Sunday evening, May 23.
« More than 150 children have been separated from their families
Prior to the official report, UNICEF issued a press release in which it « reported that more than 150 children have been separated from their families and that more than 170 others are feared missing as people fled the city of Goma (…) It is not yet known how many households have been affected by the eruption in Nyiragongo territory, north of Goma. Dozens of children in the city’s airport area have been left homeless and destitute, » the document states.
Taking care of the victims is being organised
The eruption of the volcano caused widespread panic in Goma, the capital of North Kivu, a province plagued by violence from armed groups. For the safety of the city’s inhabitants, the government has « ordered the Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of Congo and the Congolese National Police to ensure the security of the city of Goma and the evacuation routes, in order to avoid cases of theft, barbarism and infiltration during the evacuation, » said Mr Muyaya.
The natural disaster has displaced at least 3,000 people to Rwanda, according to Rwandan media reports. According to our sources in Goma, hundreds of houses and livestock have been burned by the lava from the Nyiragongo volcano. Faced with this humanitarian crisis, the government is taking action: « Our colleagues are already on their way to the airport, they will arrive late at night. But the government had shown, since yesterday, the will to take care of the first needs of the population, this has been done, and a government presence on the spot, from the first hours of tomorrow, will allow the population of Goma to see that the Republic is mobilised », added Minister Muyaya.