Monday 16 December 2019


New United Nations Resident Coordinator Ms Maria Ribeiro yesterday pledged to continue working closely with the Government and rendering humanitarian assistance.

Ms Ribeiro said this after paying a courtesy call on Vice President Constantino Chiwenga at his offices in Harare yesterday.

“I was received by the Vice President today (yesterday) and it’s my first time meeting him as the new UN Resident Coordinator here. Most of our conversation was around the humanitarian situation in Zimbabwe, the food security situation in Zimbabwe and in some way it is quite a precarious situation given the impact of drought and climate change in Zimbabwe

“So we had some very good discussions about how we could move forward towards what Government is doing. I also shared with the Vice President the current stages for the plans of the humanitarian assistance for 2020 in Zimbabwe,” she said.
She said UN agencies have been working on post-Cyclone Idai responses and beyond that the World Food Programme (WFP) and other agencies have been working on food security, while the World Health Organisation (WHO) is seized with health matters.

“But given the current situation of the impact of drought and the economic crisis, there is need to accelerate certain humanitarian interventions. So we will continue to work on this,” she said.

In October, Ms Ribeiro said that she would seek to build on the long-standing engagement with Zimbabwe based on a relationship of trust and mutual respect with all stakeholders, together with the UN Country Team in Zimbabwe.

“I look forward to supporting the Government and the people of the Republic of Zimbabwe to build a peaceful and inclusive society for sustainable development and inclusive economic growth,” she said. 

“Having just arrived, it is immediately clear to me that there is a need to help change the narrative of Zimbabwe, recognising the need for reforms, but also the progress made that we can continue to build upon.”

As a result of unprecedented climate and economic shocks, Ms Riberio said, the humanitarian needs had unfortunately increased in Zimbabwe.

She said the UN was working closely with the Government and humanitarian partners to meet the priority life-saving multi-sectoral needs of the most vulnerable people affected by the humanitarian situation. Herald


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