UN laments shortfall in funding for victims in Idai-hit southern Africa

Source: Xinhua| 2019-04-06 06:01:08|Editor: Mu Xuequan
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UNITED NATIONS, April 5 (Xinhua) -- The response to UN pleas to fund humanitarian aid for the millions of people affected by Cyclone Idai in southern Africa is serious lacking, a UN spokesman said on Friday.

In the case of hard-hit Mozambique, only 21 percent of the 282 million U.S. dollars sought has been funded, said Stephane Dujarric, spokesman for UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.

He cited information gathered from the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), humanitarian partners and governments of the affected countries.

The latest count of government-confirmed deaths is 598 in Mozambique with many more fatalities expected as accessibility is gained to sites.

"In Mozambique, almost 530,000 people have been reached with dry food, and efforts are underway to accelerate the distribution of education supplies and the cleaning of schools previously used as accommodation centers," Dujarric said.

The number of cholera cases in Mozambique, where it is endemic, has reached 1,740 with two deaths, OCHA said. A vaccination program was launched earlier in the week with 900,000 doses.

"In Zimbabwe, humanitarian partners and the government (Friday) launched a revised flash appeal for Zimbabwe, seeking 60 million U.S. dollars to respond to the needs of 270,000 people affected by floods following the cyclone," Dujarric said.

The Zimbabwe government reported 299 confirmed deaths, with 300 missing.

Malawi's humanitarian response faces a gap of 26 million dollars to reach the 45.2 million dollars required for the response plan, Dujarric said.

Assistance has been provided to approximately 200,000 people, prioritizing 87,000 displaced people in the hardest-hit areas with floods, he said.

At least 60 people have died in Malawi, reports said, citing government figure.