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Tsvangirai Says Zimbabwe Food Situation Critical

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Harare, February 16, 2010 – Zimbabwe’s Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai said Zimbabwe is drawing an urgent drought mitigation plan as the country’s food situation has reached “catastrophic” levels with most parts of the country having received below normal rainfall.

“I’m sure we are already faced with a drought disaster. It’s already in the plans of government to come up with a drought mitigation plan,” he said.
He said at least USd 500 million will be required for food aid this year.
Tsvangirai last week undertook a food assessment tour that saw him visit Matabeleland and Midlands provinces. Tsvangirai described what he saw as “disaster”, saying climatic conditions and man-made activities had combined to pull down a once vibrant agricultural sector.
“We all have witnessed a catastrophic situation in terms of the drought in this part of the country. These provinces are drought stricken areas. We already face an immediate food need. So we do not have much time and therefore some capacity must be built to be able to alleviate this problem,” said Tsvangirai.
 “The challenge we have got is that of infrastructure rehabilitation which certainly would go a long way to ensure that the food situation improves in this country,” he added.
Farm invasions have continued in Zimbabwe despite the new unity government, a situation which has continued to worsen Zimbabwe’s agricultural production.

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