In October 2021, SOLIDARITES INTERNATIONAL launched a project to rehabilitate the airstrip in the town of Markounda (Central African Republic), with the aim of facilitating access to the sub-prefecture of Ouham-Pendé, where humanitarian needs continue to be significant. This rehabilitation was all the more urgent because the roads leading to the area are the scene of frequent robberies. The security risks incurred by humanitarian convoys (personnel and equipment) jeopardized the arrival of humanitarian aid in Markounda.
A few weeks later, our teams were delighted by the success of the project. On October 21, 2021, a UNHAS (United Nations Humanitarian Air Service) plane made a reconnaissance flight with SOLIDARITES INTERNATIONAL staff on board and managed to land on the airstrip. The local population who greatly participated in the project also celebrated this successful operation. The NGO chose to call on workers from Markounda to make the runway operational again.
800 meters of runway are now available to welcome flights operated by humanitarian organizations, whose personnel will be able to work safely. “Some actors, who had left the city because of the critical security situation, are already planning to return,” says Justine Muzik Piquemal, head of SOLIDARITES INTERNATIONAL’s activities in the Central African Republic. “The rehabilitation of the Markounda track is a good illustration of the efforts made by our NGO to make the most isolated and/or least secure areas accessible,” she adds.
The rehabilitation work was carried out with the support of the Humanitarian Fund of the Central African Republic (FH CAR). The Central African Armed Forces (FACA) and MINUSCA will be responsible for securing the trail.