By ZBC Reporter
THE US Ambassador to Zimbabwe this Wednesday paid a courtesy call on Acting President Retired General Chiwenga where he pledged US government’s continued support for the Zimbabwean government in fostering economic stability and mitigating drought.
Briefing journalists after the meeting, the US Ambassador to Zimbabwe, Brian Nichols, said the US government is working closely with the Zimbabwean government to try and mitigate the economic challenges that the country is facing.
“We have expressed concern with the current drought and economic situation in Zimbabwe. We are the leading donor to Zimbabwe. Just on drought and Cyclone Idai last year we provided US$110million. We stand with the people of Zimbabwe always and we will cooperate closely to ensure that the challenges of hunger are met in this country.
“We want to make sure we are coordinating closely on our cooperation. We also talked about issues of constitutional alignment, human rights, the reform agenda for government and also stressed on the importance of Zimbabwe moving forward in that area.”
Ambassador Nichols also emphasised that national dialogue was key in moving the country forward.
“We also talked about the issue of national dialogue. National dialogue is something that should be brought, inclusive and bring all Zimbabweans together to find a way forward out of all the challenges that the country is facing.
Last year the US government provided 370.3 million in assistance to the people of Zimbabwe, predominantly in areas of health and food security/emergency assistance. This includes 177.7million in health(150million) of which is for HIV and AIDS, under the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, or PEPFAR), $167,6 million in food security (including $101.9 million in emergency assistance, 10.6million to families affected by Cyclone Idai, and $55.1million for longer term food security activities), and other programs worth $25million.
In total, the US. Government has provided Zimbabwe over 3.2 billion in assistance since 1980.