Mozambique: 30,000 in Need of Assistance Inside Palma District

A map showing the location of Palma in northern Mozambique.

Maputo — The Mozambican relief agency, the National Disaster Risk Management and Reduction Institute (INGD), warned on Monday that there are about 30,000 people still inside the district of Palma, in the northern province of Cabo Delgado, who are in urgent need of support.

This is clearly in addition to the over 9,000 displaced people from Palma who, in the wake of the terrorist onslaught of 24 March, were able to make their way to the provincial capital, Pemba, and to the towns of Mueda, Nangade and Montepuez.

According to the National Statistics Institute (INE), the population of Palma town, prior to the attack, was 27,586. The population of the town, plus the surrounding area, which form the Palma Administrative Post, was 40,229.

Most of this population fled to the Afungi Peninsula, where a consortium led by the French oil and gas company Total intends to build natural gas liquefaction plants, and to Quitunda, the town built to resettle people from the area occupied by the gas project. A team from the British television channel Sky News on Sunday filmed some of the Palma displaced in Quitunda, and their main complaint was that they are hungry.

Interviewed by the Portuguese news agency Lusa, Cesar Tembe, the INGD's Director for Prevention and Mitigation, said that the needs of these displaced people are costed at 41 million meticais (about 585,000 US dollars), just for the next 30 days.

"Resources are already being sent to these people, and we are mobilizing additional resources", said Tembe, without going into detail.

He added that the mass exodus from Palma has increased the number of people fleeing from terrorist atrocities' in Cabo Delgado to around 722,000.

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