By Nevson Mpofu
Southern Africa—- -United Nations visiting Plenipotentiary Ursula Mueller Assistant Secretary General for Humanitarian Affairs arrived in Harare on 5 June. She met President Emmerson Mnangagwa on Monday 10 June in Harare. She is also the Deputy Emergency Relief Co-Ordinator for Humanitarian Affairs.
The main objective of her Regional tour visit is to do a baseline and pilot survey and assessment of Cyclone Idai disaster victims and sites in Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Malawi. It has been concluded that 3 million people have been affected in the three countries..
Ms Mueller paid courtesy visit to Chimanimani Cyclone Idai affected victims and sites with devastated Infrastructure. She notes that the situation is still pathetic though support has been received by the three countries. The Zimbabwean story is the one which she has first heard.
‘’ I met President Emmerson Mnangagwa who gave a clear picture of the real situation in the Chimanimani area. The three countries need urgent support yes. They must be helped but Zimbabwe’s situation touches my heart so much.’’
‘’UN has poured in financial support worth US60 million to 270,000 affected victims. At least US234 million has gone to 2,2 food in-secure people . There has been additional US 60 Million for those 270, 000 affected plus on top another US27 million, She narrates’’
She is on tour in three Southern African countries which were affected by Cyclone Idai . The countries are Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Malawi.
Up to date the UN has poured Net total US294 million as part of its bilateral aid to salvage thousands of people who became part of Cyclone Idai victims. Ursula reiterates the need for more aid as the situation is still merciful.
‘’I had a visit to the area of Chimanimani. I talked to people there. The situation is terrible, pathetic and heart-rending. The impact of the cyclone bites at a time Southern Africa faces immense drought. There is need for further support in particular Chimanimani victims who are at an extending risk.
‘’It is painful to note as well that this comes at a time economic challenges are at a height that needs solutions. The need for food security is just a story to go by because there are 6 million people in need of food aid and support. Besides there are Health and Education thorny issues to be addressed in the three countries, she noted’’.
Ursula Nueller highlights areas of need like the Environment, Agriculture to boost food security, Climate-Change mitigation and adaptation. There is need for re-generation in these areas which need urgent support.
‘’Affected areas in Chimanimani have to be re-generated. The need to re-build schools, clinics and public demand Infrastructure is important. The biggest challenge is that these are under-funded areas. I have to make awareness of this and mobilise for funds. ‘’ she concludes.
Ms Mueller is expected to visit Malawi in few days before she returns back to USA. Several professionals have met her concerning the talk on Humanitarian Aid. These include the Finance Minister Muthuli Ncube , Public Service , Labour and Social Welfare Minister Sekai Nzenza , UN top officials and the Media .