Government has dismissed media reports that President Levy Mwanawasa declared the flood situation in the country as a national disaster.
And Government has released an additional K14 billion for the procurement and supply of relief items to communities affected by floods in the country.
Permanent Secretary in the Office of the Vice President Austin Sichinga said at a press briefing in Lusaka today that President Levy Mwanawasa did not declare the flood situation in the country as a national disaster but only described it as a disaster that required all Zambians and cooperating partners to respond to.
Dr Sichinga said Government has also provided 15,000 metric tonnes of white maize to be used in the 2007-2008 relief activities.
Dr. Sichinga said the K14 billion will be used to procure among other items, tents, blankets, mosquito nets and chlorine.
He said Government and cooperating partners such as the Red Cross Society and United Nations have responded to the floods by providing food and shelter to the affected households and facilitated the rehabilitation of damaged infrastructure.
Dr. Sichinga reiterated President Mwanawasa’s appeal to cooperating partners for help in alleviating the effects of the floods among the citizens.
Meanwhile,Some rice and maize fields in Luena constituency have been submerged in water due to flash floods caused by the rains.
A check by ZANIS, yesterday, in the outlying areas of Limulunga Royal Village established that some rice farms were completely submerged whilst some maize has dried up due to high water levels in the farms.
And in an interview, Annet Lubasi, a farmer in Limulunga Royal Village said that the unexpected floods have adversely disturbed the 2007/2008 farming season saying that hunger was inevitable in the area this year.
Ms. Lubasi also said that part of the crop that has survived the floods was being eaten up by pests that have infested most of the farms.
She has since called on the government through the disaster Management and Mitigation Unit to put in place measures that will curtail hunger in the area.
And the Maureen Mwanawasa Community Initiative (MMCI) has donated an assortment of goods worth over K40 million to flood victims in Chief Hanjalika’s Chiefdom in Magoye, Southern Province.
Donated items include blankets, mealie meal, salt, cooking oil, second hand clothes, and candles.
MMCI Executive Director Miriam Nkunika made the donation on behalf of the organisation.
Mrs. Nkunika said the MMCI was prompted to respond to the flood victims due to the devastating effects of floods caused by torrential rains on people in the area.
Mrs. Nkunika said the MMCI is committed to supplementing Government efforts in helping those faced by calamities such as floods.
She said the MMCI will endeavour to reach out to the vulnerable people in the remote parts of the country.
And when receiving the donation, Chief Hanjalika thanked the MMCI and the First Lady Maureen Mwanawasa for the gesture.
The Chief said the quick response by the First Lady to the plight of the floods victims to his area showed that she had a heart for the vulnerable people.
He observed that MMCI has continued to play a critical role in reaching out to the vulnerable in society particularly those in far flung areas.
Chief Hanjalika noted that the gesture by the MMCI will greatly assist flood victims.
The donation by the MMCI has been made to three camps in Magoye area which includes Chitongo, Dindi and Magoye.
And about 50 families have benefited from the donation.