Andiabelong Seraphine, a pregnant woman residing at Bwitingi, Buea, was among hundreds of last month’s flood victims who trooped into Buea Town Stadium on Tuesday, April 4, to receive food aid from the United Nations World Food Programme.
Like every other beneficiary, the 45-year-old went home with 66 kilograms of rice, 21 kilos of beans, 7 liters of vegetable oil and 0.9 kilos of salt.
She told The Post the items could serve her and her five children for close to four months.
Her source of finance was nearly cut off when the flash floods that ravaged Buea on March 18 swept off the eggs she sold to make a living.
“I sell eggs at Buea Town but it was my daughter who was there on that Saturday when the floods happened. It carried most of my eggs so when they (WFP team) were passing, they registered my name and told me they can still assist me with anything. So they have given us rice. This rice like this…is very, very important for us. You cannot lack anything now because they have given groundnut oil, beans is there. It means that everything is balanced,” she said.
Her family was among 300 households that received the aid.
The WFP’s Head of Field Office for the Southwest Region, Kudzayi Mazumba, said the 28.9 metric tons of food was distributed to over 1,500 victims drawn from 300 households.
“It is very important because most of the households lost their belongings because of the flooding, some lost their food reserves and because of the impact of the flood there is added pressure on the households to find food, to find medicine, to find something to eat. As a result, WFP coming in will meet their immediate needs,” Mazumba said.
“We have packages for about 300 households and each household with about six beneficiaries, that brings to 1,800, but we have planned for 2,000 beneficiaries as per the request forwarded to us by the authorities,” he added.
Most of the victims were sourced from Buea Town neighborhood, where the floods were most destructive.
Aside causing two deaths and injuring several people, the floods swept homes, businesses and destroyed much property, including about six cars.
Dualla John, a resident of Bonalyonga in Buea Town, lost part of his house to the waters.
The 68-year-old father of six was also one of those who received WFP’s food basket on Tuesday.
“They will help me and my children for some months,” he said adding that his children “will be very, very glad” seeing the food.
WFP’s food aid came over two weeks since the devastating floods happened. The organisation said the delay was because they were waiting for the government to provide them a list of affected households.
The Cameroon government, humanitarian bodies and individuals have taken turns to help victims of the flood since the disaster happened.
By Hope Nda