The National Disaster Risk Management Commission (NDRMC) said adequate preparations have been made to assist 2.5 million citizens, including the 700,000 additional needy people affected by the law and enforcement operation in Tigray Region.
Speaking at a press conference he held on the humanitarian response in Tigray Region, NDRMC Commissioner Mitiku Kassa the government has been delivering humanitarian assistance, including food and non-food items and medical supplies, to 1.8 million beneficiaries.
In addition to the 1.8 million people who received assistance before the law enforcement operation, a joint needs assessment study underway has so far identified about 700,000 people that need support, he said.
“We dispatched teams drawn from federal ministries, partners, and NGOs in central, southern, and eastern parts of the region to conduct a joint assessment that identifies additional people who need assistance following the law enforcement in the region,” the commissioner explained.
Accordingly, two of the three teams have come up with figures, while one team is conducting its assessment. So far an estimated 700,000 people are identified as needy. “Based on those figures, we have therefore made preparations to provide support for 2.5 million people,” he disclosed.
The government has provided 311,526 quintals of grain for the regional state from its existing warehouses before the law enforcement operation and from Adama, Kombolcha, and Werota warehouses as well as wheat brought through the port of Djibouti.
Mitiku further stated that 60,000 quintals of flour and 173,200 quintals of wheat are being transported to Tigray Region, in addition to the 1.7 million liters of edible oil distributed.
“We do not have a supply gap in this regard” as this supply can feed 2.5 million people, he asserted.
According to him, a four-layered emergency coordination system (Regional, Zonal, Woreda, and food distribution point) has been put in place to capture additional needs and distribute the assistance for the beneficiaries immediately.
Moreover, the government is actively working in collaboration with development and humanitarian partners for quick delivery of supplies to increase the coverage of assistance to identified beneficiaries, Mitiku stated.
The commissioner affirmed that priorities have been given to women, children, the elderly, and disabled persons in the distribution of food, non-food items, and medical supplies.
The assistance is also being provided by air transport to those who need special assistance.
Explaining about the current humanitarian situation in Metekel Zone, Benishangul-Gumuz Region, Mitiku said more than 97,000 people have been displaced in the zone over the last three months.
There were people in need of assistance in the region earlier, he added.
Hence the government has been intensifying its efforts to assist the displaced people.
An emergency coordination center has been set up in Gilgel Beles town of the zone to coordinate the relief efforts, it was learned.
According to ENA, so far, 51,408 quintals of food and 281,480 clothes have been distributed.