ISLAMABAD – The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) today started the distribution of wheat flour from a Pakistan Government contribution of 50,000 metric tons of wheat, valued at US$16 million, to people displaced by law and order operations in the northwest of the country.
A ceremony at Jalozai camp near Nowshera in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK) province, was attended by government officials, including KPK Minister for Social Welfare and Women’s Affairs Sitara Ayaz and Abdul Basit Khan, Additional Secretary, Ministry of National Food Security and Research, as well as the Australian High Commissioner, Peter Heyward.
WFP Pakistan Country Director Jean-Luc Siblot said the contribution clearly demonstrated the Government’s commitment to addressing food insecurity in Pakistan.
“We hope that this is the start to a series of further contributions to assist the most vulnerable people in Pakistan,” said Siblot, who also thanked the Australian Government, which donated US$5 million towards the associated costs of the milling, fortifying, transport, storage, handling and distribution of the wheat flour.
Siblot added that WFP was confident international donors would recognize the Government’s commitment and he urged them to follow Australia’s example and provide much-needed additional support.
The 50,000 metric ton contribution will help ensure that WFP can maintain relief rations until December to some 1.2 million displaced people from Pakistan’s Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA).
However, a shortage of funding has already forced WFP to cut operations – including school feeding - in other parts of the country. Moreover, resources are worryingly scarce for WFP’s planned 2013-15 Protracted Relief and Recovery Operation, which will provide food assistance to some 7.3 million people in Pakistan at a cost of US$514 million. At current resourcing levels, commodities will run out from January.
For more information please contact (email address: firstname.lastname@example.org):
Robin Lodge, WFP/Islamabad, +92 51 8312330, Mob: +92 346 8564304
Amjad Jamal, WFP/Islamabad, +92 51 8312270, Mob: +92 300 850 0989
Amena Kamaal, WFP/Islamabad, Mob: +92300 8564576
Marcus Prior, WFP/Bangkok, Tel. +66 2 659 8616, Mob: +66 81 701 9208