UN humanitarian appeals for 2005 facing more than 50 per cent shortfall

29 June 2005

Six months after the launch of their appeals for 2005, the United Nations and its partners still require more than half the $5 billion sought to tackle the urgent needs of 30 million people in 29 countries ravaged by war and natural disasters, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) announced today.

Six months after the launch of their appeals for 2005, the United Nations and its partners still require more than half the $5 billion sought to tackle the urgent needs of 30 million people in 29 countries ravaged by war and natural disasters, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) announced today.

Much has been achieved with the $2.4 billion that have so far materialized – 48 per cent of the requested funds – including feeding tens of millions of people, vaccinating millions from diseases and providing shelter to hundreds of thousands around the world.

But excluding the Indian Ocean Flash Appeal launched at the beginning of the year shortly after the tsunami tragedy, funding amounts to only 36 per cent of overall requirements, an improvement over the 24 per cent registered at the same time last year but still leaving much to be done.

“The percentage response is still low and there remains a late donor response even though the current situation is a marked improvement,” the Assistant Emergency Relief Coordinator and Director of OCHA-Geneva, Yvette Stevens, said.

Moreover, the funding response has been uneven, averaging 48 per cent overall, but registering much larger deficits in eight specific appeals, such as: the Djibouti Drought Flash Appeal, with only 5 per cent of the required $7.5 million so far in hand; the Benin Flash Appeal; with only 9 per cent out of $6 million; only 30 per cent each for Côte d'Ivoire’s $36 million appeal and the Republic of Congo’s $24 million appeal.

“Every human life has the same value, and the same attention should be paid to tsunami victims as to Benin, Cote d'Ivoire, and the Republic of Congo,” Under Secretary General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator Jan Egeland said.

“This is not the case today and the majority of our activities in Africa are badly under-funded.”

 

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