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Zimbabwe gets support for drought relief

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Zimbabwe gets support for drought relief

Zimbabwe gets support for drought relief

Story by Oleen Ndori, Foreign Desk Editor

THE United Nations has pledged to support government’s response mechanisms to the El Nino induced drought.

This comes after President Emmerson Mnangagwa declared the 2023/24 summer cropping season a state of disaster this Wednesday.

The President said government will roll out a raft of measures to arrest the situation and ensure that the country is food secure.

In response, the United Nations Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Zimbabwe, His Excellency Edward Kallon says the aid agency is putting in place a response strategy to assist government.

“The UN pledges its support to the Government of Zimbabwe in mobilising resources to tackle the El Nino-induced drought and efforts are underway to finalise a response plan focusing on food security, health, education, shelter, and other essential areas to address the needs of those affected by the crisis. So far, the UN as part of the national anticipatory action and early response allocated US$ 5 million from the Central Emergency Response Fund (UNCERF) in December 2023. The sectors targeted with the advance allocation, include, Water, Hygiene and Sanitation (WASH), Health including response to the Cholera outbreak, protection, as well as agriculture and food security, and nutrition,” he said.

He added that the United Nations emphasises the importance of climate adaptation efforts, while applauding government efforts in this regard, “This crisis has far-reaching consequences across various sectors such as food and nutrition security, health, water resources, education, and livelihoods, highlighting the urgency of the situation. The UN emphasises the importance of enhancing resilience-building and climate adaptation efforts to address the effects of such extreme weather events and to combat the overarching climate crisis. The UN recognises the Government of Zimbabwe and that of the humanitarian partners for proactive planning and early actions to bolster community resilience.”

According to the Zimbabwe Livelihoods Assessment Committee (ZIMLAC) 2023 report, 2.3 million people were food insecure during the period April 2023 to March 2024, and the figure is expected to go up in the 2024 report that is being compiled.