U.N. Seeks Aid Money For Zimbabwe, Half For Food; WHO Says Country Must Spend More On Health

“The United Nations said on Friday it was seeking $268 million for aid efforts in Zimbabwe next year, with half the money to be used to buy food for more than 1.4 million people facing shortages” in 2012, Reuters reports. “The humanitarian situation in the country has continued to improve over the past couple of years. However, challenges still exist such as food insecurity” and lack of access to safe water, which has led to cholera and typhoid outbreaks, Alain Noudehou, country head of the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), said, the news service notes (12/9).

Meanwhile, “Custodia Mandhlate, WHO country representative, said Zimbabwe has made great strides in health care since 2008 when the system virtually collapsed,” but the country’s per capita expenditure remains under the WHO recommended level agreed to in the African Union Abuja Declaration of 2001, VOA News reports. “She said that while spending is under recommended levels, allocations should rise next year,” the news service writes (Gumbo, 12/9).