Drought-affected regions in Zimbabwe desperately await Mugabe’s food aid

World Today

The President of Zimbabwe, Robert Mugabe, is assuring citizens his government will make every effort to get food aid to drought-affected regions. But his assurances came after Mugabe fell under heavy criticism for holding his 92nd birthday party in one of the worst-affected provinces.

CCTV’s Farai Mwakutuya reports.

Drought-affected regions in Zimbabwe desperately await Mugabe\'s food aid

The President of Zimbabwe, Robert Mugabe, is assuring citizens his government will make every effort to get food aid to drought-affected regions. But his assurances came after Mugabe fell under heavy criticism for holding his 92nd birthday party in one of the worst-affected provinces. CCTV's Farai Mwakutuya reports. Masvingo is in Zimbabwe's southern region, the epicenter of the current drought. Vast tracts of land were cultivated at the start of the season, but now the lifeless stalks that stand in the place of what should have been a bounty, reflect the desperation of the situation. The area has seen a little rain in the last 24 hours, but prior to that there was a month-long dry spell that irreparably damaged the maize crop. In a normal season Sabhuku Machaka harvests 27 tonnes of maize. Last year, another dry season, he managed to produce 9 tonnes. With his entire crop wiped out this year, his output will be down to zero. He plans to open up his field to his cows to feed on what's left of the crop. "We are told government is going to run food for work programs. Lets hope they start soon or else people here might die," Masvingo villager Sabhuku Machaka said. Speaking during his birthday celebrations President Robert Mugabe urged responsible ministers to act quickly to minimize the harm.

Masvingo is in Zimbabwe’s southern region, the epicenter of the current drought.

Vast tracts of land were cultivated at the start of the season, but now the lifeless stalks that stand in the place of what should have been a bounty, reflect the desperation of the situation.

The area has seen a little rain in the last 24 hours, but prior to that there was a month-long dry spell that irreparably damaged the maize crop.

In a normal season Sabhuku Machaka harvests 27 tonnes of maize. Last year, another dry season, he managed to produce 9 tonnes. With his entire crop wiped out this year, his output will be down to zero.

He plans to open up his field to his cows to feed on what’s left of the crop.

“We are told government is going to run food for work programs. Lets hope they start soon or else people here might die,” Masvingo villager Sabhuku Machaka said.

Speaking during his birthday celebrations President Robert Mugabe urged responsible ministers to act quickly to minimize the harm.