Govt seeks donors’ aid for emergency relief

Kathmandu, September 4 :

The government has sought an additional $3.34 million as immediate relief to respond to the havoc caused by rains that caused floods and landslides in the mid and far-western regions of the country.

In a donors’ meeting held at the ministry of finance (MoF) today, finance minister Dr Ram Sharan Mahat urged donors to extend financial, material and logistical support for immediate relief as well as preparation for long-term preparedness on mitigation of natural disasters.

Later, the ministry of home affairs (MoHA) proposed that the above-mentioned amount is needed for emergency relief, rescue and medical services and to kickstart post-disaster reconstruction and rehabilitation activities.

Accham, Banke and Bardiya are three worst-hit districts, said Pratap Kumar Pathak, joint secretary at MoHA. According to him, over 8,000 families have been displaced from these three districts.

The death toll over the past two weeks has touched 40.

He said more than 50,000 people in the affected areas need a continuous supply of food and non-food relief materials along with immediate medical services.

Ganesh Kumar KC, secretary at the ministry of agriculture and cooperatives, presented a bleak picture of food production this year stating that there would be a net deficit of 3.5 lakh metric tonnes of total edible food requirement.

Richard Regan, representative of the UN-World Food Programme (WFP), said that a major concern is easy access to food besides availability in adequate amount.

He stated that Nepal would require $20 million to supply food in the drought and flood-affected areas of the mid and far-western regions.