by MARCUS MUSHONGA
HARARE, (CAJ News) – THERE is growing concern as millions of people in Zimbabwe are on the verge of starvation following drought and a recent cyclone.
Increases in food prices and unavailability of fuel are worsening the situation.
Humanitarian aid agencies warned the economic crises were hampering the implementation of relief programmes targeting thousands in the coming weeks.
Gabriella Prandini, local director of the non-governmental organisation, GOAL, appealed to the international community to intervene and avert a catastrophe in the Southern African country.
GOAL appealed donors to support the United Nations’ (UN’s) appeal for €295 million (R5 billion) in aid to prevent what it warned would be a serious tragedy.
“We call on the donor governments to dig deep and to provide the funding urgently needed to prevent a major humanitarian disaster,” Prandini said.
Zimbabwe is emerging from a combination of drought leading to a failed harvest, the impact of Cyclone Idai and is battling an economic crisis.
The UN estimates that 2,3 million people in rural areas need emergency food aid.
The figure is projected to increase to 5,5 million during the lean season up to March next year.
This amounts to a third of the population estimated at 15,1 million people.
Last Friday, the United Kingdom (UK) pledged £49 million (R899 million) of aid for malnourished children, families and communities following a UN Zimbabwe appeal.
“The UK stands with the people of Zimbabwe at a time when millions are at risk of starvation and disease,” Alok Sharma, International Development Secretary, said.
- CAJ News