Livelihood continues relief food distribution to households in Honiara Emergency Zone

The Livelihood Sector Committee (LSC) of the National Disaster Operation Committees (N-DOC) is continuing to get relief food supplies to households within the Honiara Emergency Zone. 

The Honiara Emergency Zone boundary is from Alligator Creek in the East to Poha River in the West end of Honiara city. 

Distribution of relief food supplies started when Honiara underwent a 4 days lockdown last month, from 6pm Tuesday 25th to 6pm Saturday 29th January 2022.

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Livelihood distribution team braved the heavy rain unloading food stock to communities in Honiara during the recent 4 days lockdown.

The goods are donated by development partners and private sector. 

Chairman of LSC Michael Ho’ota said food distribution is continuing and progressing well, but he said the worry for the Committee now is on the supply as the donated and government (SIG) purchased food supplies now running short.

“Our food supplies are running short as the initial donations and government (SIG) purchases were to cover the estimated 22,000 Households from the last census but we have since received names for almost 29,000 households just in Honiara alone, excluding (not counting) other wards outside Honiara.”

At the same time, Ho’ota calls on community leaders to organise their communities and make sure to submit only an approved coordinated household list for their entire communities to LSC. This is to speed up the process and ensure officers do not spend too much time compiling and verifying each list which is time consuming.”

Ho’ota made the appeal after LSC receives too many uncoordinated and unorganized lists from communities with many overlaps.

“Our team is receiving many uncoordinated lists from communities with many overlaps. Sometimes people will come and just drop off 3 or 4 names. This is delaying our process as it takes up a lot of our time to compile and verify each list. Lists should be coordinated for the entire community and come in through only one community leader. This will help to speed up the process. If anyone of you has not received your share, please contact your community leader and ask them to compile a list for your whole community before sending it to the LSC,” Ho’ota emphasized.

Mr. Ho’ota again appeals to people to observe all Covid-19 rules when distributing and collecting their food supplies.

Meanwhile, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MAL), Ethel Frances expressed concerns over continuous harassment by some members of the public towards her staff over “names missing” and ask for understanding. 

PS Frances said the issues of “names missing” should be an issue for each community within Honiara and their leaders to address. 

“We only prepare and distribute food according to the list presented by communities to us. Some people swore at my staff and myself over the phone and turn up at our office and harassed my staff over missing names.

“We are continuing the distributions to other areas who are yet to have their turn. If we have any spares then we will come back to the list of those whose names were missing in the first delivery, yet, because the names given are more than what is available some people will miss out,” Ms Frances said.

She said, “the census data is much less than the food supplied to us yet actual number of households submitted is way beyond the census data. Increase in population is one reason but there could be some houses getting more than what they should get and this is a sad thing because some people will miss out.

“We understand that people struggle to feed their families but this food supply will only last few days. Big question now is what can we do now to sustain our families after these few days when food is finished.”

“I don’t think being angry about not getting one’s share will solve any situation as we must continue to work to support our families. Family survival is one’s responsibility but, in such times, we must learn to support each other. I want to appeal to communities to organize ourselves so we look after each other and the most vulnerable ones are taken care of.” 

The LSC is co-led by the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MAL), Ministry of Fisheries and Honiara City Council together with other stakeholders and partners. The Committee is working closely with Honiara City Council on the food delivery mechanism. 

Source: MAL Media

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