The passage of the tropical cyclone Idai and the floods that accompanied it caused an enormous havoc in Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe. It is one of the most devastating storms affecting Southern Africa in recent history, with probably more than a thousand victims.
The Belgian government expresses its sympathy to the affected populations of the three countries. Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Development Cooperation Alexander De Croo also announces that Belgium provides assistance through the following four humanitarian aid funds, which were created specifically to provide a fast and efficient response to this type of emergency:
- The Central Emergency Respond Fund (CERF), managed by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), immediately mobilized $20 million for aid to the three affected countries;
- The Immediate Response Account (IRA) of the World Food Program (WFP) allocated $5.9 million;
- The Special Fund for Emergency Rehabilitation (SFERA) from the FAO will use $200,000 of the Belgian contribution to the fund;
- The International Committee of the Red Cross will also employ $250.000 of the Belgian contribution to the ‘Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF)’.
Because of global warming, the frequency of extreme natural phenomena has increased in recent years. Alexander De Croo: “Thanks to our flexibly deployable Belgian humanitarian assistance, aid organizations can intervene faster and more efficiently in the event of extreme natural disasters. The consequences of global warming are more and more visible in the South in the form of storms, floods or long periods of drought. In these moments, it is important to show that we support the people affected. “
The flexibly deployable contribution of Belgium to the funds (CERF, IRA, SFERA,DREF) and organizations mentioned above amounts to a total of more than €40 million in 2019.Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Kingdom of Belgium – Foreign Affairs, Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation.