BY PRIVELEDGE GUMBODETE GOVERNMENT yesterday confirmed that 38% of the country’s rural population, about 3,8 millon people, will face hunger next year.
Speaking during a post-Cabinet briefing, Information minister Monica Mutsvangwa said projections by the Zimbabwe Vulnerability Assessment Committee (ZimVAC) for Rural Livelihood Assessment Results (2022) on the country’s food security situation were true.
“Cabinet wishes to assure the nation that all the 3,8 million people projected to be food insecure will be targeted as beneficiaries,” Mutsvangwa said.
“The nation is assured that the country has 490 000 metric tonnes of grain in the strategic grain reserve. Thus, the 120 000 metric tonnes required to support the needy households will be sufficiently covered.”
Mutsvangwa said government was pinning its hope on humanitarian agencies such as the World Food Programme to chip in with food aid.
“Government will distribute food to all the needy households in provinces. World Food Programme and other development partners are expected to channel their food assistance through government structures as per practice.”
Mutsvangwa said distribution of grain would be undertaken through district drought relief committees.
On COVID-19, she said vaccination in schools had reached the intended 70% target.
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“Cabinet reports that of the 2 615 registered secondary schools nationwide, a total of 1 942 (73%) have reached a vaccination coverage of 70% or more. Schools that have not reached the 70% vaccination coverage are mostly in Harare Metropolitan, Manicaland and Midlands provinces.”
She said schools that had not reached the target should set up vaccination desks as they register learners for the schools reopening in September 2022.
“This approach is expected to help identify and mop up all secondary children who have not been vaccinated and hence ensure that they are all vaccinated before they resume classes.”