EU, UN plug aid looting gaps

A grainy picture of trucks believed to be carrying donated foodstuffs being taken into Information minister Monica Mutsvangwa’s house in Greenside, Mutare, last week

BY KENNETH NYANGANI

THE United Nations and the European Union yesterday said they had put in place mechanisms to prevent any further looting and politicisation of aid meant for the victims of Cyclone Idai.

“We take seriously the reports that the food is being distributed politically. The government of Zimbabwe must review that, this must not happen. The government of Zimbabwe must respect the needs of the people,” the European Union ambassador to Zimbabwe, Timo Olkkonen, said at a meeting with Manicaland Provincial Affairs minister Ellen Gwaradzimba in Mutare yesterday.

“The distribution of the food must not be distorted in any way and any further violations are destroying the goodwill.”

Gwaradzimba met with Olkkonen and the United Nations ambassador to Zimbabwe, Bishow Parajuli, who raised concerns over bureaucracy in the distribution of food to Cyclone Idai victims.

“We are working on a system that minimises bureaucracy and maximises direct benefit to the affected people. You (Gwaradzimba) are fully aware of places where the food was distributed to who, why and how,” Parajuli said.

“We need to maintain openness in the system on these humanitarian issues and we should continue working together. We have seen that the victims need food and we jumped in. For the way forward, in order to see the effective distribution of the food, we are going to meet the people affected directly and make co-ordinated efforts to assist them.”

“We will have UN colleagues and civil society groups stationed here (Command Centre) for a period of time and work on different modalities and mediums to see effective and fair distribution of the food,” he added.

The remarks by the two diplomats follow a NewsDay exposé this week that Zanu PF officials were looting aid meant for the cyclone victims from Silver Stream distribution centre in Chimanimani for distribution to party members in their wards, including those who were not affected by the floods.

Zanu PF Manicaland chairman Mike Madiro denied the allegations, saying the aid distribution programme had been politicised.

“Remember, there has been a disaster in Chipinge and Chimanimani, and MPs from all over the country have been using those cars branded with Zanu PF logo assessing and helping the situation,” he said.

“I am not even aware that there are donations that were being looted. Those are just allegations. People must come with evidence; the V11 forms to prove that the donations have been stolen.”

He accused some Zanu PF officials of using the relief food to fan intra-party fights, with Information minister Monica Mutsvangwa also being accused of looting foodstuffs meant for cyclone victims.

“What is happening is not good. People are using the relief food to trade accusations. Do you think a person like Minister Mutsvangwa will do that? And this is coming from fellow Zanu PF members,” he said.

Mutsvangwa told NewsDay last night that she had actually sourced the items which were offloaded at her Mutare home on Friday using her personal resources.
“That’s unfair. I have donated those goods. I sourced those goods using my own money,” she said.

8 Comments

  1. Innocent Matandamavi

    Those doing the right things must never be destructed by smear campaigns. However,we need to keep crooks checked.

  2. Is this the reason why some mdc members are sometimes likened to the devil? You seem to enjoy leveling accusations against your political opponents which you cannot prove. That is why mdc will never rule this country. You are not serious and very iresponsible. You are always buisy creating lies while people are suffering and you are surprisingly not contributing anything to the victims of the cyclone. What are your ngos doing which you usualy partner in violence and destruction of property? How much have they contributed to the cyclone victims? When are you going to call for the removal of sanctions which is another cyclone which has been ravaging the nation for close to two decades? You need to practice to tell the truth if you expect me to vote for you. We don’t want liers in positions of responsibility and authority. This is the same way you lied about your presidential aspirant having beaten Ed in presidential polls while Mdc perfomed so dismaly in the polls for parliamentarians. please let’s be serious

  3. This place is Disorderly

    Just shows that those in positions cannot do anything in an orderly manner how sic the place is

  4. That is what happens when the leadership is corrupt,selfish and greedy.they can rob the poor and steal from the needy.

  5. You are further fuelling what needs to be corrected. It may not be at institutional level that these things happen but individuals that take advantage of the situation to gain extra mileage. Instead of being defensive the accused must investigate what is really happening and stop whatever practices are not right. NGOs for your information and Christian related organisations have contributed immensely to the affected victims.

  6. shunguhadziurayi mangarayi

    Surely you can not imagine what really mdca is there for. This party has totally nothing I mean nothing and nothing to offer the people of Zimbabwe other than to create hate and dislike of one another among us. Where ever they are they are busy thinking of how they can tarnish ZANU PF and its government by spreading falsehoods to the nation.The newsday and daily news will be on the forefront to try and justify the falsehoods just to make sure this country remain under the spotlight for no reason. You can hardly hear ED or ZANU PF members creating stories to tarnish mdca because they are all mature people. The hate rage being created by the mdca shall haunt them in the future. This thing of creating false stories every time shall come to a point of expiration when the few misguided or hoodwinked realize the truth and this is going to happen very soon.

    1. Hezvooo unopenga iwe

      You are very sick…. une siki mumusoro

  7. The Minister was seen offloading goods at her Mutare home

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