March 30, 2021

Lockdown leaves 2.4 million Zimbabweans hungry: WFP

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Munashe Mukahlera

Covid-19 lock-downs have left an estimated 2.4 million urban dwellers in Zimbabwe unable to find work and afford basic food.

This is according to the latest Zimbabwe vulnerability assessment committee report. The report is coordinated by the food and nutrition council, which is under the office of the president and cabinet, and the world food programme.

According to the report, nearly 83 percent of urban households are now struggling to buy basics such as mealie meal, salt and cooking oil, up from 76.8 percent in 2019. Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare Minister Paul Mavima, believes the country’s food situation will improve on the back of improved yields this year.

“We are going to stop the drought relief programme towards the end of April. We will continue with feeding the vulnerable under social welfare but between May and June we will do a full assessment of the situation on the ground.

Whoever is food insecure, we will continue assisting them but under the food for work program,” he said.

Informal traders were the most affected by the lockdowns. They could not operate their small
businesses due to the restrictions meant to contain the spread of Covid-19.

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