A week after Standard Bank donated K23 million worth of relief items to flood victims, Chief Executive Officer Andrew Mashanda has visited the thousands of the victims in their camps in Chikhwawa to further assess the situation.
Speaking at Tizora II village camp where an estimated 1,400 flood victims are being pitched, a visibly shocked Mashanda said he was deeply touched by the plight of the victims, whom he said are in dire need of relief.
“We are all human beings first and other things later, so for me and Standard Bank, this visit was important so that I’m able to assess how relief efforts are progressing on the ground,” he said.
Mashanda said due to the huge scale of the disaster, relief efforts need to be coordinated to ensure that vulnerable people and the worst affected are assisted as a matter of priority.
“These people need food and other relief items, and they need them today and not later. The situation on the ground requires concerted effort because government alone or any single organisation can’t go it alone. That’s why we at Standard Bank are involved and playing our part,” he said.
Standard Bank’s response to the flood comes after the United Nations appealed for more relief aid as initial assistance had dramatically fallen short of the requirement due to the massive scale of disaster.
The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) said new figures have revealed that 336,000 people have been displaced by the floods in Malawi, almost doubling the previous figure of 174,000.
UNICEF said in a statement released Friday that according to the United Nations Disaster Assessment and Coordination (UNDAC), more than 1 million people are affected, with 276 being dead or missing, and 645 injured.
Previous statistics put the figure of displaced people at 174, 000 and those affected in one way or the other at 683,000.