By Benedict Tembo
GOVERNMENT has dispatched a consignment of humanitarian aid worth about US$1 million to help survivors of Cyclone Freddy in Malawi.
A Zambia Air Force plane has dispatched the consignment of aid to Malawi today.
The Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit under the Office of the Vice-president dispatched the humanitarian aid following a directive by President Hakainde Hichilema to provide relief intervention to neighboring, Malawi after his counterpart President Lazarus Chakwera, declared a state of disaster following the cyclone that ripped through the country and left over 250 people dead in Blantyre and other cities.
According to the Zambia News and Information Service, DMMU National Coordinator, Gabriel Pollen in the company of Ministry of Information and Media Permanent Secretary Kennedy Kalunga officially flagged off the relief dispatch to Malawi at Lusaka ZAF Base Airport this morning.
Dr. Pollen told the journalists that Zambia is providing humanitarian aid to Malawi to help survivors of the cyclone despite the country also facing devastating floods in many parts of the country.
Dr. Pollen said President Hichilema’s decision to direct DMMU to provide humanitarian aid to Malawi is in the spirit of good neighborliness.
Among the donated relief items include metric tonnes of maize, beans, salt, tents, Liquid chlorine, blankets, dignity kits, sanitary and hygiene packs, kitchen sets, and circular mosquito nets.
Media reports in Malawi indicate that there are a number of casualties of Cyclone Freddy who are wounded, missing or dead and that the number has continued to rise.
Good deed… US $1 million in Africa is worth at least $10 million from of the same material from the USA. It is good to see African countries being reliant on each other in time of need.
Good to see help going out to our 11th province. DMMU should extend this help to other provinces being cut off due to damaged roads. Would also like to see a SADC disaster management team with beefed up resources to manage such disasters for efficiently and effectively.
Great job, Zambia. But more needs to be done. Like others have said, all SADC countries need to put resources together to have a well prepared disaster management team. Acquire some helicopters for search and rescue (about 10 to start with), and trucks that can be used to deliver much needed aid (medicine and food). We have more than enough resources in SADC. Don’t be stingy. And don’t forget the Islands, Madagascar and Mauritius. They’re part of SADC too.
The pictures from our 11th province are distressing. Muddy floods washing away homes like they’ve been sent by the devil. I don’t know whether the international community currently focused on Turkey will cast an eye on Southen Africa . Such disasters should make us see the need for unification. Malawi cant fight this tragedy alone. Nor can Mozambique , Madagascar Mauritius. Lets stand up and think about more workable solutions