WFP declares drought a humanitarian crisis

BY LORRAINE MUROMO

THE World Food Programme (WFP) has declared that the severe drought currently facing Zimbabwe is a humanitarian crisis that needs urgent intervention, especially from the donor world.

Speaking at a media briefing in Harare yesterday, WFP country director Eddie Rowe said the United Nations agency was pushing to raise $293 million to feed the millions of people in need of food assistance.

“We are running out of time. We appreciate the help of our donors, but we urgently need the cash now so that we procure the resources and deliver on time. These media briefings are also to help with creating a sense of urgency so we harvest the required funding on time,” Rowe said.

“We are hopeful that donors will come to the aid of Zimbabweans. So far there are positive indications that donors will come.”

Rowe emphasised that their system was digital and left no room to partisan distribution of food, thus not subject to bias.

“The goodness of our system is that it is refined. We only extend assistance to those that need assistance,” he said.

“Registration is done on a digital platform, where we have a data system of beneficiaries and our checklist or criteria is followed up on by our partners and local authorities who identify those in need of assistance.”