Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE Government has contracted World Vision Zambia (WVZ) to distribute 500 metric tonnes of relief food to households affected by the prolonged dry spell in Lundazi district.
“World Vision Zambia has been contracted by government to distribute relief food in Lundazi. Last month we distributed 250 metric tonnes in the valley areas of Lundazi and this month we are distributing the remaining half in the plateau area,” WVZ Humanitarian Emergency Affairs (HEA) Manager Bernard Zgambo explained.
“We hope this will cushion the impact of the population affected by the drought in Lundazi.”
Mr Zgambo noted that the poor rainfall pattern in Lundazi district and other parts of Zambia was as a result of El Nino which has also hit most parts of Southern Africa.
El Niño is a complex weather patterns resulting from variations in ocean temperatures in the Equatorial Pacific which has affected rain cycle in Southern Africa region by causing drought.
HEA Food Monitor, Mr Derick Mulilo confirmed the adverse effects El Nino has had on crops following a check carried out on a number of maize fields in Lundazi.
“After going round some fields, we discovered that some crops have dried up. People are facing serious challenges and we anticipate that the food insecurity situation will get worse,” Mr Mulilo said.
Mr Mulilo said after WVZ conducted community meetings on alternatives that could cushion hunger situation, community members decided to start planting drought resistant crops like cassava, cow peas and sweet potatoes because they were still in the planting window.
“The communities in Lundazi have decided to start planting alternative crops such as cassava, cow peas and sweet potatoes because they were still in the planting window to cushion the situation,” he added.
Mr Mulilo said 20 percent of the relief food was given to the vulnerable such as the disabled, elderly and the chronically ill while 80 percent was food for work for upfront materials that the community provided for the construction of a Secondary School.