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NIAMEY, Niger – Emergency relief supplies landed in the West African state of Niger Sunday for victims of severe floods which struck the regions of Tillaberi and Dosso this month.
The supplies, donated to Plan International by Irish Aid in Dublin, include tents, tarpaulins, jerry cans, mosquito nets and blankets. It is part of the continued commitment by the Irish government to the people most in need in crisis-hit Niger.
The plane was met by Plan Niger Country Director Rheal Drisdelle who formally presented the supplies to government representatives comprising Daouda Marthe, Vice President National Assembly; Saidou Sidibe, Prime Minister’s Chief of Staff; Mrs Sa’a Mallam Barmou, Prime Minister’s Advisor for Humanitarian Affairs; and, Interior Minister Abdou Lalo.
Plan and its partners will distribute the supplies to flood victims.
Rheal Drisdelle, Plan Niger Country Director said: “These floods are another wave of disaster upon disaster which Nigeriens have been suffering this year stretching their resilience to near breaking point. However, they can take comfort in knowing that they have friends in the government and people of Ireland and Plan Ireland who, without a second thought, swiftly responded to their needs.”
Plan Ireland CEO David Dalton commented, “In the space of 10 months, Niger has been hit by a food crisis brought on by high market prices and poor harvests, a refugee crisis triggered by conflict in neighbouring Mali, followed by a cholera outbreak and now devastating floods. The Irish government’s announcement is important and demonstrates their ongoing commitment to those in need in the developing world.”
Ireland’s Minister for Trade and Development Joe Costello said “The supplies of tents, blankets, mosquito nets, health care supplies and water storage equipment which Ireland is sending to Niamey will help thousands of Nigeriens, victims of the severe floods in the western regions of Tillaberi and Dosso. Ireland has moved quickly to respond to the emergency in the Sahel region. Since the beginning of this year, I have authorised more than €9 million in funding to assist in the humanitarian relief efforts there, including €4.25million in funding to the UN and agencies which I announced in May.”
WFP Director, Dennise Brown, was also at the airport.
The floods have destroyed more than 14,000 homes and left 176,000 homeless and 44 dead. The majority of the homeless are children.
In the Dosso Region, floods - triggered by a half-year’s worth of rainfall - swept through numerous villages in five departments destroying thousands of homes and leaving a scene similar to a demolition site.
In the capital Niamey, 161mm of rain in a few hours caused the Niger River to burst its banks over the holy Islamic Ramadan holiday weekend of Eid-ul-Fitr displacing thousands of people and destroying hundreds homes.
The majority of flood victims in both regions are sheltering in schools raising concerns about the prompt start of classes in October after the summer holidays.
Emergency food supplies have already been distributed to 583 families in the villages of Nakin Fada, Tessa, Sandidey, and Deykoukou Ouest by Plan Niger.
The regional agro-meteorological centre for West Africa (CILSS) has forecast the rainy season (May-October) to be 20-50 per cent higher than the 30-year average (1981-2011).
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Further details please contact:
Mamoudou Madougou, Emergency Response Manager, Niger (French, English)
Mobile: +227 94 55 82 60
Mike Mansfield, Head of Marketing & Sponsorship, Plan Ireland,
Tel: 087 920 4365
Aminatou Abdou, Communications Officer, Plan Niger (French)
Mobile: +227 94 26 55 33
Florence Cisse, Regional Media Specialist, Plan West Africa (French, English)
Mobile: +221 777 403 600,
Terry Ally, Press Officer, Emergencies and Disasters, Plan International HQ, UK, (English)
Mobile: +44 7720 736 884 or + 44 7781 379 517 (UK)
Mobile: +223 66 17 30 29 or +223 70 79 55 17 (Mali)
- Photos of the arrival of the supplies are available at: http://mediabank.plan-international.org/?c=9301&k=bcb8a2ebc0
- Plan Niger’s appeal for the floods is US$444,000;
- The value of today’s relief supplies is US$203,114.75;
- The supplies comprises: 4,500 blankets; 250 tarpaulins; 1,500 mosquito nets; 400 ropes; 200 pick axes with handles; 4,500 Jerrycans; 150 multi-purpose tents – each 25 square metres;
- Plan Niger has provided 11.65 tons of rice, 500 family kits (includes cooking utensils and water containers) and 1.5 tons of cooking oil to affected families in the Dosso Region;
- An OpEd by Rheal Drisdelle calls on the humanitarian community to take a fresh look at its aid strategies to avoid recurrence of disasters. http://plan-international.org/about-plan/resources/blogs/change-needed-for-niger-to-bounce-back-from-current-crises
Founded 75 years ago, Plan is one of the oldest and largest children's development organisations in the world. We work in 50 developing countries across Africa, Asia and the Americas to promote child rights and lift millions of children out of poverty. Plan is independent, with no religious, political or governmental affiliations. www.plan-international.org