DUBAI: A Dubai initiative to provide potable water to five million people facing shortages in Asia and Africa has raised nearly $50 million (36.89 million euros), local media reported on Wednesday.
The UAE Water Aid campaign, named Suqia, has exceeded its goal as the funds collected will in fact benefit seven million people, Emarat Alyoum daily reported.
Contributions from Dubai ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum alone would benefit one million people, it said.
The drive was timed to start with Ramazan, a period favoured by believers to pay alms.
Contributions, which totalled $49.1 million came from large top companies in Dubai, businesspeople and ordinary citizens, media reported.
It will help fund drilling, pumping, and water purification methods in poor countries.
The UAE Red Crescent has already started work on boring wells in 10 countries, including Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Niger, Somalia, Ghana, Sudan, Indonesia, Togo and Iraq, the reports said.
Published in Dawn, July 17th, 2014