, Zim 'worst' in southern
Harare - Zimbabwe is worst off among the six southern African countries threatened with famine, which is a crisis rooted in the Aids epidemic and not just crop failures and hunger, a top UN official said on Thursday.
Stephen Lewis, the
UN's special envoy on HIV/Aids in
Fifteen million people
Nearly eight million
people, or more than two-thirds of
"There's no question that this calamity is something that neither this country, nor the continent nor any of us have ever dealt with before," Lewis noted.
The special envoy, who
is on a trip to four of the six affected countries, including
Asked whether he felt the Zimbabwean government was doing enough to deal with the crisis, the UN envoy said Mugabe had spoken "with concern" about the crisis.
"I got the sense when he (Mugabe) was talking of someone who was certainly deeply aware of what was happening," said Lewis.
He said he held a serious discussion with Mugabe about possible methods of intervention that could be used to overcome the crisis.
Deputy Finance Minister Chris Kuruneri was reported by the Ziana state news agency as having told Lewis the number of Zimbabweans needing food aid had climbed to eight million people from the previous figure of 6.7 million. - Sapa-AFP