Zambia’s Plea for Assistance: President Calls for Aid Amid Drought

Zambia's Plea for Assistance: President Calls for Aid Amid Drought
EPACopyright: EPA Zambian farmers are suffering amid the on-going drought

Zambia’s Plea for Assistance: President Calls for Aid Amid Drought

Zambia’s President Hakainde Hichilema has issued an urgent plea for international assistance, revealing that nearly half of the country’s population has been severely affected by the ongoing drought. In a national address, President Hichilema emphasized the critical need for approximately $940 million in aid to address immediate life-saving and life-sustaining humanitarian and recovery requirements.

According to President Hichilema, the drought has left a devastating impact, with 9.8 million Zambians bearing the brunt of its effects. Among them, 6.6 million individuals urgently require humanitarian assistance to mitigate the crisis’s repercussions.

The adverse effects of the drought are most pronounced in Zambia’s agriculture sector, where approximately one million hectares of planted maize—a staple food in the country—have been adversely affected. The president underscored the gravity of the situation, highlighting the essential role of international cooperation and support from various stakeholders, including the international community, domestic partners, the private sector, religious institutions, and civil society organizations.

In addition to the dire food insecurity, Zambia is grappling with electricity shortages, necessitating eight-hour-long electricity rationing periods. The country heavily relies on hydroelectric power sources, exacerbating the strain on energy supply amidst the drought-induced challenges.

President Hichilema’s impassioned appeal reflects the severity of the crisis and the urgent need for collaborative efforts to address Zambia’s multifaceted challenges. As the country navigates this humanitarian crisis, international solidarity and support will play a pivotal role in providing essential relief and facilitating long-term resilience against the impacts of drought and related adversities.

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