MAHANORO, Madagascar (AFP) – Madagascar’s president, Marc Ravalomanana, has resigned. Cyclone Batsirai slammed Madagascar overnight, killing at least six people and displacing roughly 48,000 people, according to the national disaster management office.

The cyclone dissipated overnight, but not before causing damage in the tiny Indian Ocean island country, which is still recovering from a catastrophic tropical storm earlier this year.

An AFP journalist observed severe rains and wind in the eastern region of Mananjary before the storm made landfall, causing local villagers to weigh down weak corrugated iron roofs.

The rain will produce floods in many sections of Madagascar, according to the country’s meteorological agency.

According to Faly Aritiana Fabien of the country’s disaster management office, Batsirai made landfall in Mananjary on Saturday night as a “powerful tropical cyclone” with gusts of 165 kilometres per hour (102 miles per hour).

In a text message to AFP, his colleague Paolo Emilio Raholinarivo, who is in charge of risk management at the same agency, mentioned the number of deceased and their location, but offered no additional details.

However, the national meteorological office said Sunday that “Batsirai has weakened,” despite the fact that it had previously warned of “significant and widespread damage.”

The cyclone’s average wind speed had dropped to 80 km/h (50 miles per hour), and the greatest gusts had dropped to 110 km/h from 235 km/h when it made ashore, according to Meteo Madagascar.

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