Mozambique: 368,000 People Displaced in Northern and Central Mozambique

Maputo — The attacks by islamist terrorists in the northern Mozambican province of Cabo Delgado, and by the self-styled “Renamo Military Junta” in the central provinces of Manica and Sofala, have displaced more than 368,000 people from their homes, according to Luisa Meque, general director of the country’s relief agency, the National Disaster Management Institute (INGC).

Most of these people have remained in their home provinces, but thousands of those fleeing from terrorism in Cabo Delgado have made their way into Nampula and Niassa provinces.

Cited on Tuesday by the independent television station STV, Meque said that 19,247 displaced people are now living in 13 accommodation centres, where they are short of food, clean water and decent shelter.

She said the situation had worsened with the Covid-19 pandemic. “We must follow all the instructions so that our accommodation centres can pay the greatest attention to preventing the spread of Covid-19”, stressed Meque.

“We have to pay attention to sanitation and to water supply”, said Meque. Water is crucial, since regular hand washing is an essential defence against Covid-19.

Crowds gathering in the accommodation centres posed a major hazard, she added. The number of displaced people is continuing to rise, and this makes it difficult to impose the social distancing viewed as crucial in restricting the spread of Covid-19.

“We are drawing up assistance plans, so as not to overcrowd the accommodation centres, or to adjust the numbers already there, so as to avoid greater contamination”, said Meque.

According to Sergio Dinoi, representative of the cooperation partners for assistance to the displaced, 35 million US dollars are required only for those fleeing from the Cabo Delgado terror, for the period from May to December this year.

So far, donors have provided 20 million dollars, he said (57 per cent of the amount required), and this has already been spent in various areas of humanitarian assistance.

“We are working with the Cabo Delgado displaced people”, he said. “The displaced people are the target population, but we are also working with the host communities who need support”.

Source: Agencia de Informacao de Mocambique