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Zimbabwe Faces Grain Shortage, Government Declares State of Disaster

 President Emmerson Mnangagwa has declared a state of disaster following projected grain shortages caused by El Nino-induced drought. The country expects a harvest of only 868,273 metric tons this season, leaving a deficit of nearly 680,000 metric tons.

Rutendo Maraire

Mnangagwa emphasized that the government will take necessary measures to prevent hunger-related deaths: "Adequate resources will be mobilized and redirected towards national food security, including through supplementary grain imports."

International aid organization CARE notes that erratic weather, such as floods and droughts, are causing crop losses and disease risks across southern Africa. Zimbabwe, with 4.1 million people facing food insecurity, is among the worst affected.

The government intends to secure all domestically available grain while encouraging private sector grain imports. Social Welfare Minister July Moyo has pledged that no one will be denied food aid regardless of political affiliation. The government and the World Food Program are collaborating to ensure timely food distribution.

President Mnangagwa also stressed the importance of increased access to clean water to reduce the spread of waterborne diseases like cholera. An ongoing cholera outbreak, first reported in February 2023, has resulted in over 20,000 cases and 370 deaths.


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