The Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit (DMMU) has so far distributed 45,400 metric tonnes of mealie-meal and stock feed to hunger-affected districts countrywide, says Minister in the Office of the Vice-President Olipa Phiri.
And Phiri says government is planning to expand the relief food basket to all the vulnerable households between October, 2019, and March, 2020.
Speaking when she launched the 2019 In-Depth Vulnerability and Needs Assessment Report at the DMMU offices in Lusaka, Thursday, Phiri disclosed that 45,400 metric tonnes of mealie-meal and stock feed to hunger-affected districts countrywide under the DMMU.
She also announced that the stock feed distribution was the first-ever in the DMMU’s history as a means addressing the shortage of pasture in some parts of the country.
“In order to quantify the impacts of these hazards on various sectors, the Zambia Vulnerability Committee, coordinated by government, through the DMMU, conducted an impact study in 87 districts through a multi-sectoral in-depth vulnerability and needs assessment. This is the basis upon which the recovery action plan and the relief programming has been developed. As I address you today, government, through DMMU, has so far distributed 45,400 metric tonnes of relief, consisting of mealie-meal and stock feed to the affected districts,” Phiri said.
And she announced that government was planning to expand the relief food basket to all the vulnerable households between October, 2019, and March, 2020.
“As the country gets to the most critical period from October, 2019, to March, 2020, where shortage of food is mostly higher, government plans to expand the relief food basket to all the vulnerable households. In addition to the food relief, government has for the first time in history, been distributing stock feed. This is meant to address the shortage of pasture due to the prolonged dry spell. Government has also been drilling emergency community boreholes to address the water challenge being experienced in some parts of the country. In terms of infrastructure, DMMU, working with various stakeholders, has been repairing and rehabilitating critical public infrastructure that were damaged due to the flash floods, these include bridges and crossing points to schools and health facilities. Notable among these are Msuzi Bridge in Eastern Province and Lunzua Bridge in Northern Province, among others,” Phiri said.
She appealed to all local and international stakeholders to compliment government efforts and help in managing the hunger situation.
“Government wishes to urge all key stakeholders; local and international non-governmental organizations, civic leaders, faith-based organizations and the general public, to do their part in the success of this process by complimenting government efforts in managing the situation. The needs are great, but I have every confidence that my government, through a coordinated approach with all the stakeholders, can overcome and get back to better times. As I take this opportunity to launch the 2019 In-Depth Vulnerability and Needs Assessment Report and its recovery action plan, may I also stress that the coordination of this response will be led by the Office of the Vice-President, through the Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit, with support of the UN system,” said Phiri.