With the launching of a new document, the Ethiopian government and donor agencies will combine efforts in mitigating the El-Nino induced drought in the country.
The National Disaster Prevention and Preparedness Commission along with the United Nations Ethiopia Humanitarian Support Coordination Bureau came up with the new document in response to the drought.
The document incorporated food and other basic necessities for the coming year.
It is believed that provisions in the official document will help minimize problems in food supply and its accessibility as well as integrate humanitarian and development assistances.
The document launching event also saw pledges from country representatives and donor agencies to support drought in Ethiopia. The government stressed on the need for increased international support considering the extent of the drought.
The UN Ethiopian humanitarian support coordination bureau called on countries to offer urgent support for the country which is generous enough to host over 700 thousand refugees from neighboring countries.
Commissioner for the National Disaster Prevention and Preparedness Commission Mitiku Kassa on the occasion said the Ethiopian government has so far allocated 200 million dollars in the fight against the drought.
Mitiku said the event paves the ground for joint actions in 2016 that would integrate donations and supports to ward off the drought.
Some 10.2 million citizens are estimated to need urgent aid in the coming year which will need 1.4 billion dollars.
The government has set aside additional 97 million dollars and the pledge from donors stands at 163 million dollars.
Mitiku said international donor agencies turned their face on Ethiopia due to the lingering instability in Yemen, Iraq and Syria.
Some 400 thousand of the 10.2 million victims of the current drought are under five children, with 1.7 of the total number constituting pregnant and lactating mothers.
In terms of the distribution of those affected, the majority reside in Oromia and Amhara states with the two regional states taking 37 and 22 per cent share of the total 10.2 million citizens affected by the drought, respectively.
Some 15 per cent of the victims are in Somali and 12 in Tigray with the rest seven and four per cent, respectively, going to the Southern Nations, Nationalities and People’s and Afar states.
The document stipulates that 3.6 million citizens need urgent health services while 1.3 million need education and 800 thousand should be provided with urgent shelter and non-food items.
But the majority, 5.8 million citizens, need urgent water supply with 2.5 million needing protection against gender based violence.
Ethiopian missions abroad will also take part in soliciting support as forums will be organized to discuss on the document.
Ambassadors and representatives of the U.S. Britain, Denmark, Norway, Australia, Turkey, China, Japan and other embassies in Addis Ababa as well as international donor agencies and development cooperation institutions attended the document launching forum.
Appreciating the government’s effort to reach out to victims of the drought, the participants pledged to stand alongside the government in offering their support.