Sudan declares state of emergency
KHARTOUM – Sudanese authorities and the United Nations are rolling out aid to tens of thousands who lost their homes in record Nile floods, but many of those camping out on roadsides and higher ground are despairing of when it will reach them.
Sudan’s government said it had allocated more than 150 million Sudanese pounds (2.11 million pounds) to help flood victims, the state news agency said.
The U.N. refugee agency UNHCR said that with the help of the United Arab Emirates it had flown 100 metric tonnes of relief material including blankets, which will be distributed across 12 states.
The floods left at least 102 people dead in the country and destroyed or damaged tens of thousands of homes, according to the interior ministry. Authorities declared a three-month state of emergency.
Standing by tents in south Khartoum, Idris Ahmed, who lost his home, said the government was not giving enough support. “They are not helping, not doing anything,” he said.
“I, as a citizen, am asking for my citizen’s rights, am looking for refuge.”
Residents packed into boats to check on their houses as parts of the capital Khartoum such as Toti island at the confluence of the White and Blue Nile were submerged.
“We hope that things get better, that this flood gets better,” said Alaa Eldin, another displaced person. “But from what we see, what is coming may be harder… that is why we are calling on everyone to stand by the citizens, the simple, poor citizens who have lost their shelter and home.”
Some 85 000 internally displaced and 40 000 refugees were affected by the floods in Khartoum, in eastern Sudan, along the White Nile and the restive Darfur region who urgently needed help, UNHCR said in a statement. (Reuters)