WFP official to visit flood-hit areas of Sindh today

Published October 2, 2022
THE land and structures of an under-construction housing project in Hyderabad remain under several feet of water weeks after downpour in the province.—PPI
THE land and structures of an under-construction housing project in Hyderabad remain under several feet of water weeks after downpour in the province.—PPI

KARACHI: The United Nations will launch a fresh appeal for another $800 million for Pakistan flood victims on Tuesday, said a senior official of the World Food Programme here on Saturday.

It emerged during a meeting of a six-member delegation led by WFP deputy executive director Ramiro Lopes da Silva, who called on chief secretary Dr Muhammad Sohail Rajput at Sindh Secretariat. Health Minister Dr Azra Pechuho, and secretaries of relevant departments attended the meeting.

According to a statement issued after the meeting, Mr Silva informed the meeting that UN would launch the fresh appeal for another $800 million for flood victims on Tuesday as the initial appeal for $160 million was insufficient to meet the country’s requirement.

“He further said that it was difficult to assess the situation in Sindh from the headquarters and after coming here they realised the scale of disaster and that there was a shortage of food. He said he is going to visit the flood-affected areas of Sindh on Sunday,” the statement added.

Ramiro Lopes da Silva pledges all possible assistance to victims

The WFP delegation assured the meeting that all possible assistance would be provided to help flood victims in this difficult time.

The WFP delegation comprised Ms Binta Bajaha, special assistant to the deputy executive director, Mr John Aylieff, regional director Bangkok, Chris Kaye, representative and country director, Rathi Palakrishnan, deputy country director, Ms Salma Yaqoob, officer in charge, Sindh.

Earlier, the meeting discussed the latest statistics on food security. Chief Secretary Dr Rajput said that the floods had caused a lot of damage to the crops in 23 districts of the province. He said that Sindh had been exporting rice, but this year due to rain and floods the rice crop in the province had been badly affected and would not be sufficient even for domestic use.

He said that efforts were being made to ensure a good wheat crop as a programme to distribute free seeds to farmers was under consideration.

Dr Pechuho told the meeting that flood victims in Sindh were being given ration bags by the government.

She stressed the need for focusing on nutrition needs of children up to two years of age and pregnant women in these areas, and said the supply of clean drinking water in flood-affected areas was being ensured with the help of international organisations.

Published in Dawn, October 2nd, 2022

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