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Cash needed to prevent aid pipeline breaks, WFP

[Angola] Angolans in Cuemba depend on relief food to survive. IRIN
Zimbabwe and Mozambique could face pipeline breaks
The World Food Programme (WFP) has warned that its aid pipeline to two of the countries most affected by regional food shortages could be in danger. In its latest situation report the WFP said it was "urgently seeking cash resources for regional procurement of commodities in order to quickly mobilise stocks and pre-empt looming distribution shortfalls from September onwards". While there were considerable carry-over stocks from the past emergency operation, "the majority of these commodities are still at origin or in transit and will not be available for distribution in-country until the latter months of 2003". This would be too late for most people in need of aid in the region, said Mike Huggins, WFP regional public information officer for Southern Africa. "It's essential that we get cash donations as soon as possible to allow us to procure food [from] local markets, because it takes so long for food donated to arrive in-country - between 3 and six months. We're facing pipeline breaks in two countries already by August. If donations are not forthcoming we will have a very serious situation on our hands," Huggins explained. "The pipeline situation has very serious implications for Mozambique and Zimbabwe," the emergency report noted. These were two of the hardest hit countries, Huggins added. "We appealed for US $308 million [for regional food aid], of which about two thirds will be primarily for Zimbabwe," he noted. In Mozambique "the situation has actually got worse, it's the only country in the region where the situation has actually deteriorated to such an extent that we will be increasing our food aid assistance and [distributing] to a larger number of beneficiaries this year," Huggins said.

This article was produced by IRIN News while it was part of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. Please send queries on copyright or liability to the UN. For more information: https://shop.un.org/rights-permissions

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