Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Oxfam launches $200,000 Myanmar Cyclone Appeal


Oxfam launches $200,000 Myanmar Cyclone Appeal

Agency says aid effort will face huge challenges


Oxfam New Zealand today launches a Myanmar Cyclone appeal, calling on the New Zealand public to respond generously and donate $200,000 for the cyclone stricken area.

The devastating cyclone which hit Myanmar's delta region early Saturday, May 3, has left 22,500 people dead and 41,000 others missing, according to the latest figures provided by Reuters. The death toll is expected to rise.

"The aid effort faces huge challenges," said Sarah Ireland, Oxfam East Asia Regional Director. "Communications are down in the cyclone-hit areas, roads have been washed away, and getting aid to people will be very difficult. The international community needs to be quick to respond to this crisis and to ensure the needs of those most affected are met."

Like all international aid groups, Oxfam is facing tight government restrictions while working to meet the needs of thousands of very poor people affected by the cyclone.

"One of the first issues is dealing with clean water and sanitation to prevent disease," says Barry Coates, Oxfam New Zealand Executive Director. "Oxfam has specialist expertise to deliver support., We're assessing what we'll be able to do right now."

An estimated 24 million people — nearly half the country's total population — live in the five divisions and states struck by the disaster. When Cyclone Nargis slammed into the Irrawaddy delta it whipped up a massive storm surge reportedly four metres high. Reuters is reporting that Nargis is the most devastating cyclone Asia has seen since the 1991 storm that killed 143,000 people in Bangladesh.

"We need to remember that Hurricane Katrina resulted in under 2,000 deaths. The size of this disaster, by comparison, is enormous. The death toll is likely to climb as remote communities are contacted. Providing effective relief won't be a quick fix – the poor transport and communications, combined with the scale of the disaster, means that it will take many months for people to be able to recover from the loss of family and neighbours, rebuild their homes and re-establish their livelihoods," says Coates.

"This is another major disaster to hit a poor and vulnerable region of Asia. Oxfam's analysis of natural disasters has documented the increased scale and frequency of extreme weather events, likely to be associated with climate change. In Myanmar, as in previous disasters, it is the poorest of the poor that are being hit the hardest. We are calling on the New Zealand public to respond generously to the people of Myanmar."

Oxfam currently does not run operational programmes in Myanmar. Oxfam will be responding to the crisis through partner organisations, working at a grassroots level so that the real needs of the people will be met. Oxfam plans to provide them with funding for local provisions, as well as emergency response equipment and technical expertise, Oxfam has vast experience working in these conditions, having worked through local partner organisations during the 2004 Asia Tsunami.

Donate to Oxfam's Myanmar Cyclone Appeal by calling 0800 400 666 (24hours), make an automatic $20 donation by calling 0900 600 20 or donate online at www.oxfam.org.nz


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Life And Times Of Peter Dunne

In the end, Mr Pragmatic calmly read the signs of impending defeat and went out on his own terms. You could use any number of clichés to describe Peter Dunne’s exit from Parliament.

The unkind might talk of sinking ships, others could be more reminded of a loaded revolver left on the desk by his Cabinet colleagues as they closed the door behind them, now that the polls in Ohariu had confirmed he was no longer of much use to National. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Labour’s Campaign Launch

One of the key motifs of Ardern’s speech was her repeated use of the phrase – “Now, what?” Cleverly, that looks like being Labour’s response to National’s ‘steady as it goes’ warning against not putting the economic ‘gains’ at risk. More>>


Lyndon Hood: Social Welfare, Explained

Speaking as someone who has seen better times and nowadays mostly operates by being really annoying and humiliating to deal with, I have some fellow feeling with the current system, so I’ll take this chance to set a few things straight.. More>>


Deregistered: Independent Board Decision On Family First

The Board considers that Family First has a purpose to promote its own particular views about marriage and the traditional family that cannot be determined to be for the public benefit in a way previously accepted as charitable... More>>


Transport Policies: Nats' New $10.5bn Roads Of National Significance

National is committing to the next generation of Roads of National Significance, National Party Transport Spokesperson Simon Bridges says. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Why Labour Isn’t Responsible For Barnaby Joyce

As a desperate Turnbull government tries to treat the Barnaby Joyce affair as a Pauline Hanson fever dream – blame it on the foreigners! We’re the victims of the dastardly New Zealand Labour Party! – our own government has chosen to further that narrative, and make itself an accomplice. More>>


Rail: Greens Back Tauranga – Hamilton – Auckland Service

The Green Party today announced that it will trial a passenger rail service between Auckland, Hamilton and Tauranga starting in 2019, when it is in government. More>>


Housing: Voluntary Rental Warrant Of Fitness For Wellington

Wellington City Council is partnering with the University of Otago, Wellington, to launch a voluntary Rental Warrant of Fitness for minimum housing standards in Wellington, Mayor Justin Lester has announced. More>>





Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election