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UNDP: Mozambique Hosts Pledging Conference to Raise Money for Reconstruction Efforts after Cyclone Devastation

The cyclones also destroyed much of the nation’s residential infrastructure

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mozambique cyclone
FILE - Women walk to a camp for the displaced in the aftermath of Cyclone Idai, in John Segredo, near Beira, Mozambique, April 3, 2019. VOA

The U.N. Development Program says Mozambique will host a pledging conference later this week to raise money for reconstruction efforts in the wake of cyclones Idai and Kenneth that devastated the country over the months in March and April.

The cyclones, hitting weeks apart, have impacted 1.85 million people, according to the UNDP. The conference will take place on May 31 and June 1 in the city of Beira, an area severely impacted by the cyclones.

The cyclones severely weakened the country’s health care infrastructure and reduced access to sanitation and safe water, resulting in an outbreak of cholera. It also destroyed much of the nation’s residential infrastructure.

mozambique cyclone
A woman and her baby walk past cholera vaccination campaign posters on the first day of the cholera vaccination program at a camp for displaced survivors of cyclone Idai in Beira, Mozambique, April, 3, 2019. VOA

Houses and other buildings have been destroyed, leaving many without adequate shelter. According to Mozambique’s National Institute of Disaster Management, more than 23,000 people are without shelter. Availability of food is also an issue in Mozambique, with many crops devastated by the cyclones.

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According to the UNDP, the first day of the conference will focus on “technical discussions,” whereas the second day, which will be headed by Mozambique’s President Filipe Nyusi, is to be oriented around pledges.

The Post Disaster Needs Assessment (PDNA), a study evaluating the extent of the cyclones’ impact, “forms the basis of the Beira conference”, according to Mozambique government spokesperson Ana Comoana, who is quoted in a U.N. press release. (VOA)

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Mozambique Scrambling to Contain Cholera Outbreak after Cyclone Kenneth

Kenneth, the second cyclone to hit the country in five weeks, destroyed health clinics and contaminated the water supply

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mozambique, cholera outbreak
FILE - A health worker prepares to administer an oral cholera vaccination to a child at a camp for displaced survivors of cyclone Idai in Beira, Mozambique, April 3, 2019. VOA

VOA U.N. correspondent Margaret Besheer contributed to this report.

Officials in Mozambique are scrambling to contain a cholera outbreak in the north of the country after Cyclone Kenneth devastated the area last month. Kenneth, the second cyclone to hit the country in five weeks, destroyed health clinics and contaminated the water supply.

The World Health Organization estimates there are “nearly 190,000 people in need of health assistance or are at risk of diseases in Mozambique,” U.N. spokeswoman Stephane Dujarric said.

Kenneth struck while Mozambique was still struggling to deal with the impact of Cyclone Idai, which hammered the country’s central region just weeks earlier, flattening the port city of Beira and killing more than 1,000 people across Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe.

cholera outbreak
A woman and her baby walk past cholera vaccination campaign posters on the first day of the cholera vaccination program at a camp for displaced survivors of cyclone Idai in Beira, Mozambique, April, 3, 2019. VOA

According to the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, cholera cases in Cabo Delgado Province have risen almost five-fold to 64 since the outbreak was declared last week.

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Medical relief agencies such as Doctors Without Borders, known by its French initials MSF, are supporting the Ministry of Health by providing materials such as tents, water and sanitation equipment for a cholera treatment center in Pemba.

“We have two essential goals now: saving the lives of severely sick patients and containing the outbreak,” said Danielle Borges, MSF project coordinator in Pemba. “We need to isolate and treat sick people so they recover, and so that they do not contaminate others.” About half a million cholera vaccines are expected to arrive in the region in the next few days. (VOA)