(Yangon: 23 February 2009): Cyclone affected people in the delta of Myanmar were visited by members of the German Parliament this weekend. Members of the Parliamentary Committee for Economic Cooperation and Development; J=FCrgen Klimke and Hellmut Königshaus, were accompanied to the delta by the German Ambassador Julius Georg Luy and the UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator, Bishow Parajuli. This was the second visit by a European high-level delegation so far this year. Last month, the Minister of the Environment and International Development of Norway, Erik Solheim, and Minister for Development Cooperation of Denmark, Ulla Toernaes, also visited the delta to assess the progress in Post-Nargis response and future recovery needs.
During the full day visit to villages in Bogale Township, the delegation witnessed activities in the sectors of health, cyclone resistant shelter, housing, food security, water and livelihoods, implemented and supported by the Government of Myanmar, UN and Non-Governmental Organizations. Of particular focus, were German funded activities.
As well as noting the progress in the relief and recovery work, the delegation could see for themselves that there are continuing needs for support, to the 2.4 million people who were severely affected when cyclone Nargis struck on the 2nd and 3rd of May last year.
"People we met in the delta expressed great concern for the next cyclone season. Adequate shelters, rehabilitated school buildings and cyclone resistant community buildings were some of the urgent needs expressed by the communities. The UN is pleased to see the sincere interest by the visiting German parliamentarians in supporting the cyclone affected people. People will need support across all sectors, for years to come," said the UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator, Bishow Parajuli.
The Post-Nargis Recovery and Preparedness Plan (PONREPP) that was launched earlier this month, outlines medium term recovery needs for the next three years. The plan was made under the auspices of the Tripartite Core Group (TCG), comprising the Government of Myanmar, ASEAN and UN, in collaboration with the humanitarian community, and has an estimated cost of nearly USD 700 million. The UN Revised Appeal for USD 477 million, covering the period up to April 2009, now stands at 65 per cent/USD 310 million funded.
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