Zimbabwe appeals for funding to assist flood victims
The Zimbabwean government on Monday appealed for 200 million U.S. dollars to rebuild infrastructure and assist people affected by recent floods that wrecked havoc in southern parts of the country.
Launching the appeal, Vice President Phelekezela Mphoko said at least 271 people had died since December as a result of the floods, while thousands had their homes destroyed.
"It is against this background that an appeal for humanitarian assistance is being made by the government of Zimbabwe to both the domestic and the international communities to come to the aid of Zimbabwe," he was quoted as saying by the state-run news agency New Ziana.
He said the destruction caused by the floods was massive, with schools and roads having been destroyed while disease outbreaks were occurring due to the excessive rains.
Finance and Economic Development Minister Patrick Chinamasa said about 200 million dollars was needed to repair damages caused by the floods.
"The damage arising from the floods is very extensive and unprecedented in the history of our country," he said.
He said the government would raise 35 million dollars towards assisting the flood victims and to repair infrastructure.
United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) country representative Bishow Parajuli rallied development partners to join hands with the Zimbabwean government in responding to the disaster.
President Robert Mugabe last month declared the floods a state of disaster. The transport ministry said it is looking for 100 million dollars for emergency road repairs following the floods.
In a statement to Xinhua Monday, the Civil Protection Unit said short-term requirements included food and temporary shelter to the affected people, while restoration of affected schools and health institutions constituted medium-term needs.
Long-term requirements included funding for reconstruction of damaged bridges, roads and breached dams, as well as reconstruction of homes and social amenities in Tsholotsho district.