Geneva, 21 February 2011
1. Brief description of the emergency
On Wednesday 16th February 2011 there was a bomb blast accident at the Gongola Mboto Military base in Dar es Salaam Tanzania which lasted for 5 hours. This accident has affected the residents of the Gongola Mboto neighbourhood within a 20 kilometres radius, where ACT member TCRS has programme activities.
According to government reports on Thursday 17th February, 32 people have been confirmed dead, more than 100 people injured and 4,000 people rendered homeless sheltering at the National Stadium. The accident also destroyed 23 depots, residential houses, public buildings, churches and secondary school.
The city's Airport has remained closed since the onset of the bomb blast.
This is the second time Dar es Salaam is facing devastating bomb explosions (after the early one in 2009) which destroyed livelihoods, killing tens of people and leaving thousands others without food, shelter, clothing and sanitation facilities.
During the incident, residents of Gongola Mboto were hurriedly advised by authorities to run for their safety. In the stampede, children and other family members were separated. By Friday 18th February many families had not reconnected.
4,000 people have no shelter, food and sanitary requirements, 32people have been confirmed dead and 100 people seriously injured.
Houses have been destroyed beyond repair, making the whole vicinity of Gongola Mboto and the neighbourhood a ghost town.
The psychological effect on people cannot be overestimated.
3. National and international response
On Friday 18th February, the ACT Forum Tanzania members together with government officials and other like minded organizations undertook rapid assessments to determine the extent and magnitude of the emergency.
An early response has been initiated to address immediate needs of the bomb blast survivors. This includes 20 bales of clothing from ACT Alliance member, Tanganyika Christian Refugee Service (TCRS).
4. ACT Alliance response
In addition to the clothing provided by TCRS, ACT members in Tanzania, led by TCRS are developing a Rapid Response Fund Appeal to provide more support to the bomb blast survivors, promote healing and building the peoples resilience to future emergences.
ACT Alliance forum members in Tanzania involved in this response are Norwegian Church Aid (NCA), Tanganyika Christian Refugee Service (TCRS), Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tanzania (ELCT)
Any funding indication or pledge should be communicated to Jean-Daniel Birmele, ACT Chief Finance Officer (Jean_Daniel.Birmele@actalliance.org).
Thank you for your attention.
For further information please contact:
ACT Acting Deputy General Secretary, Barbara Wetsig (phone +41 22 791 6230) or
ACT Regional Programme Officer, Katherine Ireri (phone +41 22 791 6040 or mobile phone +41 79 433 0592)