Dube, 31 May 2022 (TDI): Qatar’s Ambassador to South Africa, Tariq Ali Faraj, announced that Qatar would send humanitarian aid to KwaZulu-Natal (KZN), a province in South Africa that has suffered from a devastating flood in April and May. The Ambassador made the announcement at a press briefing on Monday. Ministers including Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, Naledi Pandor, Lindiwe Zulu, Premier, Sihle ZIKALALA, MEC Nomagugu Simelane, and Speaker for Ethekwini Metro also participated in the meeting.

Officers from KZN expressed a warm welcome to these most-needed aids. In addition, Qatar is not the only foreign country that supports South Africa after the flood. Last month, China’s Ambassador to South Africa, Chen Xiadong, presented a 1-million RMB cheque to Social Development Minister, Lindiwe Zulu.

What Happened in KwaZulu-Natal?

A flood swept through the KwaZulu-Natal province in April and May 2022. Actually, since last April, the coastal region of Durban in South Africa has been suffering from many floods. According to Sihle Zikalala, the Premier of KwaZulu-Natal, 459 people have lost their lives in the floods during the last two months.

Conservatively estimating, the damage that happened to public infrastructure stands at 25 billion ZAR so far. To be specific, lots of critical infrastructure such as schools, bridges, and roads are no longer available. Meanwhile, losses to the industry and enterprises were around 7 billion ZAR. At the same time, around 45,000 workers have temporarily lost their jobs since many workplaces cannot open due to the flood.

Furthermore, damaged roads have also disrupted logistics and made it difficult for aid to arrive. While community care centers are heavily overloaded, there is a serious shortage of medical staff. Thus, it will take a long time to rebuild infrastructure and restore public services.

Qatar South Africa flood
A flood swept through the KwaZulu-Natal province, South Africa, in April and May 2022.
Qatar’s Aid to Disaster Areas is the need right now: 

Given the current shortage of help and supplies, people in the affected areas urgently need to provide necessities. Qatar’s humanitarian aid includes food, clothing, generators, water purifiers, ventilators, tents, and medical supplies. Tariq Ali Faraj, Ambassador of Qatar to South Africa said that a team from Qatar will stay in KwaZulu-Natal on the ground for a couple of weeks. The team will support local forces in the distribution of aid as well as the management of the disaster response.

Simultaneously, representatives from both Qatar and South Africa expressed their will to strengthen bilateral relationships. By promoting economic cooperation and trade, Qatar-South Africa’s relationship will benefit both nations and their people a lot.

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