Mozambique’s National Institute of Meteorology (INAM) had warned that a tropical storm is developing in the Mozambique Channel and hit parts of the country by the weekend if it continues to drift towards the eastern coast of the continent.Tropical Storm Cheneso, the first extreme weather event of the 2022/23 rainy season in Mozambique, has been battering parts of western Madagascar with heavy rains and gusty winds over the past few days.
Currently classified as a severe tropical storm, Cheneso is expected to become a tropical cyclone by the weekend, according to weather experts on Wednesday.
Forecasts indicate that the system would strengthen into a tropical cyclone as it tracks southwestward in the Mozambique Channel from Thursday to Saturday.
Experts warned that, although there is uncertainty about the exact track and intensity of the storm, the system could hit the southeast coast of Mozambique.
The effects of the system are already being felt in Mozambique, along the coastal districts of the provinces of Nampula and Zambézia, where INAM warned that strong winds of up to 100 kilometres per hour and gusts of up to 130 kilometres per hour may occur over the next few days.
Mozambique is prone to tropical cyclones this time of the year, with the worst ever such extreme weather event being Cyclone Idai that claimed thousands of people and left a trail of destruction in the country, Malawi and Zimbabwe in March 2019.