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Siavonga in tremor scare

OLIVER SAMBOKO writes

@SunZambian

SIAVONGA has experienced an earth tremor with a magnitude of 3.9 on the Richter scale raising fears about the safety of Kariba Dam which is currently under rehabilitation.

There are no reports of any damage recorded on the dam and other infrastructure so far following the disturbance.

The Kariba Dam wall was reported to have developed cracks a few years ago, raising fears of a catastrophe if it was not rehabilitated as soon as possible.

The earth tremor was felt in Siavonga and surrounding areas with some local people interpreting the occurrence as a sign that the Nyaminyami, the Tonga god, was communicating something to the people.

The residents and their Southern neighbours in Zimbabwe experienced rattling and rumbling, which lasted for about 30 seconds at about 12:00 hours.

The epicenter of the tremor was determined to be about longitude 16.770S and latitude 28.633E, according to the Department of Meteorology in the neighbouring Kariba Town in Zimbabwe.

One resident, Astridah Phiri, said she experienced the earth tremor.

“As I was having a nap before going for work, I was awakened by earth movements and heard the rumbling and felt the shaking,” she Ms Phiri narrated.

Local people attribute earth tremors in the region to the Nyaminyami, river god, who is said to live in the Lower Zambezi River after being separated from her husband during the construction of the Kariba Dam in the 1950s.

Traditionalists view the tremors as a confirmation from the gods of their happiness following the conducting of rituals on the Zimbabwean side recently.

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