EU, Gambia to provide D14.6M for food crisis
Wednesday, April 25, 2012
The European Union (EU) in collaboration with the government of The Gambia, agreed on Wednesday 11th April, to release GMD14.6M (365, 000 Euros) to the World Food Programme (WFP), as part of the rapid response to the food crisis in the country, its monthly [April] newsletter edition disclosed.
“The funds will be used to purchase 1300 tons of food and will be focused on the country’s 19 most vulnerable districts, notably the Central River Region. The funds have been allocated from the European Commission STABEX scheme [now expired], which was originally designed to compensate ACP countries for falls in export revenue,” it stated.
Since crop failure was officially declared by The Gambia government in March, it has launched a broad appeal for assistance both within and outside to respond to the imminent crisis. It received positive response from various concerned actors, notably the Republic of China on Taiwan that provided the sum of US$3 million to The Gambia to buy 2,300 metric tons of seeds and import 1,360 metric tons of fertilizer to help the country ride out of the food shortage that resulted from last year’s crop failure. The Action Aid International, The Gambia and the World Food Programme (WFP) have both shown commitment to deal with the crisis.
Also prominent was the cash donation by the former president of the Republic of The Gambia, Alhaji Sir Dawda Kairaba Jawara, who gave his month salary of D50, 000, to a fund set up to by government deal with the situation.
The government of The Gambia through the Office of the Minister of Agriculture, it would be recalled, had in March declared 2011-2012 farming season a failure resulting from severe crop failures and a corresponding soaring of food prices.
In that release dispatched to the media institutions including the Daily Observer, the Ministry of Agriculture said the post-harvest assessment of the 2011 farming season, which was characterised by below normal and poorly distributed rainfall, indicated a reduction in total crop production of more than 70%.
Author: Hatab Fadera