HARARE – The Zimbabwe government says it is mobilising 10,000 metric tonnes of mealie meal, cooking oil and an assortment of non-food items in response to Malawian President Lazarus Chakwera’s recent appeal for world assistance in the aftermath of a devastating Tropical Cyclone Freddy which killed over 300 and further destroyed the livelihoods of tens of thousands in the neighbouring country.
This was revealed Tuesday by Information, Broadcasting and Publicity Minister Monica Mutsvangwa at a post-cabinet media briefing in Harare.
Minister Mutsvangwa said President Emmerson Mnangagwa “led Cabinet in crafting a plan to render humanitarian assistance to Malawi following the recent devastation by Cyclone Freddy”.
“The cyclone claimed over 300 lives and caused extensive damage to homes and social services infrastructure,” she said.
“Thousands of victims suffered injury and displacement, while the affected areas were rendered impassable.”
Added the minister, “In response to the appeal for assistance by Malawian President His Excellency Lazarus Chakwera to his fellow SADC Heads of State and Government, Cabinet has constituted a Disaster Relief Committee led by the Minister of Local Government and Public Works to draw up a comprehensive assistance package for disaster-stricken Malawi. The Committee will liaise with the Government of Malawi on modalities for conveying the relief package.
“Cabinet has directed that the mobilization of relief assistance should commence immediately and include 10 000 metric tonnes of mealie meal; cooking oil; blankets; clothing; construction material for cabins; sanitisers, detergents, bath soaps, stationery and other learning materials.
“To widen the scope of donations to Malawi, Government is encouraging the private sector, national institutions and citizens to donate generously to this worthy cause.”