The world must help Pakistan recover with a new vision, says UNDP

07 Sep 2010

 
The records of the agriculture department of Nowhsera in Pakistan have been badly damaged by the floods.
(Photo: UNDP Pakistan)
Islamabad, Pakistan - The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) said today that even as the humanitarian effort continues daily in Pakistan, fast action is vital to rebuilding lives and livelihoods in areas where the waters have receded.

“What is happening in Pakistan is not just about recovery and rehabilitation of life, it is also about restoring hope and building futures,” said Ajay Chhibber, UNDP Director of the Regional Bureau for Asia and Pacific at a news conference in Pakistan’s capital, Islamabad.

“This slow moving disaster needs the international community to wake up and help Pakistan with a new vision to recover. What happens here has regional and global, humanitarian and social implications,” said Mr. Chhibber.

UNDP is a key UN agency on the ground in Pakistan helping in the response to floods, which has left a fifth of the country under water and affected over 18 million people.

UNDP is taking the lead, on behalf of the international community and in support of the Government of Pakistan, in the early recovery and rehabilitation phase, and in assessing the impact of the floods on the Millennium Development Goals. The aim is to provide support so that the economy can be rebuilt, community infrastructure can be repaired, livelihoods can be restored, and ultimately, people can get their lives back on track.

UNDP is currently developing a US$100 million early recovery programme within the overall context of the UN response. Priority areas will include revitalizing livelihoods through such means as cash grants and ‘cash for work’, rebuilding community and local governance infrastructure and vital public services and reducing risk the next time around.

“People need cash right away to rebuild their homes and their means of making a living,” said Mr. Chhibber. “Credible oversight and monitoring mechanisms in the country will help to attract more funding resources for the monumental task ahead in all of the flood-affected areas,” he said.

As part of his two-day Pakistan trip, Mr. Chhibber went to Nowshera, a hard-hit district that includes a sizeable Afghan refugee population. 

“From what I saw in Nowshera, the flood-affected included Afghan refugees that once again lost all of their possessions after having restored some semblance of their lives and livelihoods. They now have to start all over again.”

While in Pakistan, Mr. Chhibber has so far met with H.E. Mian Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif, Chief Minister of Punjab and H.E. Amir Haider Khan Hoti, Chief Minister KPK, Lt. Gen. Nadeem Ahmed, Chairman National Disaster Management Authority, Ms. Shahnaz Wazir Ali Special Assistant/Special Advisor to Prime Minister and other senior government officials, and international donors.

Contact Information

For further information and media assistance, please contact,

Cherie Hart, UNDP Regional Communications Advisor/Mehreen Saeed, Communication Analyst, Strategic Management Unit, UNDP Pakistan
4rth Floor Serena Office Complex, Islamabad, Pakistan
Tel: +92-51-8355650/0300 535 8225 or Email: Cherie Hart, cherie.hart@undp.org  or mehreen.saeed@undp.org
Website: http://www.undp.org.pk
Flood updates page: http://undp.org.pk/flood-in-pakistan.html