WFP earmarks funds as flooding hits thousands in Congo

Months of torrential rain in northern Congo has left some 83,000 people battling the effects of flooding, the World Food Programme said Monday.

“To date, 83,000 people are concerned in six districts in Likouala department. Other districts along the Congo River and Ubangi could be hit in the coming days,” said the WFP’s Josias Gautier Massamouna, with the region labouring under almost incessant rain since July. 

The WFP announced it was making $1 million available in emergency funding for those worst affected as it responds to the worst flooding seen in the area in two decades.

Last week, the Congolese government declared a humanitarian emergency and requested international assistance.

WFP representative in Congo, Jean-Martin Bauer said the UN organisation was responding by making funding available “to respond to the most urgent needs stemming from these floods.” He added that some 35,000 people would benefit.

Massamouna said one of the consequences of the flooding had been to push up food prices and reduce supplies, notably of cassava.

Last year, flooding hit 200,000 people across the country, according to a February government estimate.