Portuguese construction company Mota-Engil is helping the Mozambican government with $1 million recovery works following Cyclone Idai, the company’s CEO Manuel Mota told Lusa on Thursday.

“We immediately offered to help with recovery works, construction services and also food and other essentials through the Manuel António da Mota Foundation”, he said.

Mota-Engil is one of the largest employers in Mozambique with 2,000 workers and the country represents 20% of the company’s turnover in Africa.

“The works we are going to provide are valued at $1 million are borne by the company”, the CEO stressed, although none of the 20 worksites has been affected by Cyclone Idai.

“We have worked in Mozambique for many years, the country is our main client, so it is time to show our solidarity”, he concluded.

Some 400 people died in the passage of the cyclone through Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe, according to provisional data released by the countries’ authorities.

Mozambique’s president, Filipe Nyusi, announced on Tuesday that 350,000 were at risk and decreed the state of national emergency. He has also proclaimed three days of national mourning.

The International Red Cross said that at least 400,000 people are displaced in Beira due to the cyclone, calling it the “worst humanitarian crisis in the country.”

With heavy rains and winds of up to 170km/h, the storm reached Beira (central Mozambique) on Thursday night, leaving approximately 500,000 residents without power and communication lines.

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