News / Africa

Many Congolese Still Need Emergency Aid

People on the streets of Goma, DRC during a lull in the fighting, November 20, 2012.  (VOA 100 Citoyens journalistes de RD Congo)
People on the streets of Goma, DRC during a lull in the fighting, November 20, 2012. (VOA 100 Citoyens journalistes de RD Congo)

Multimedia

Audio
Joe DeCapua
Humanitarian agencies are still trying to reach thousands of people in the eastern DRC who were displaced by the recent military offensive by M23 rebels. Many of the displaced fear they may have to flee violence yet again.


The situation in Goma, capital of North Kivu Province, is described as calm during the day, but marked by nighttime banditry. Goma is a hub of humanitarian activity. The Congolese army retook control after M23 rebels withdrew last week.

“We are obviously still looking at a really acute humanitarian situation here. We have about 130,000 people living in camps in and around Goma and those are just the camps here. We also know in Masisi territory to the west of Goma there’s a lot of fighting there between several different armed groups. We can’t access that area very easily at the moment; and we’re really concerned about the situation there as well,” said Oxfam spokesperson Christina Corbett, who is in Goma.

Oxfam is working in three of the main camps around Goma. Two are overcrowded. The camps are filled with those who’ve been displaced numerous times over the past month. That’s in addition to many displacements over recent years. A new camp is currently under construction to help alleviate the overcrowding.

“We are scaling-up our response so that we can reach about 100,000. We truck a lot of water into these camps. The main focus of our work is water and sanitation, and we bring a lot of clean water into the camps. But the infrastructure that was already set up in some of these camps is not able to cope with the number of people that are now living in some of these camps,” she said.

If water is not trucked into the camps, Corbett said the displaced are forced to get water from Lake Kivu or use dirty water to wash or drink.

She said, “There’s still enormous uncertainty here, and people don’t really know what is going to happen. This constant displacement does take a huge toll on the population, and it takes people away from their lands. They’re not farming so they can’t grow the food that they need.”

Corbett said Goma continues to have periodic power outages, which affects pumping clean water into the city. She added if the situation remains calm, the infrastructure should become more reliable.

Oxfam and other aid agencies said the response to the situation in eastern Congo remains underfunded. They also call on all armed groups in the region to allow them access to those in need.

You May Like

Turkey's Controversial Reform Bill Giving Investors Jitters

Homeland security reform bill will give police new powers in search, seizure, detention and arrests, while restricting the rights of suspects, their attorneys More

Audio Slideshow In Kenyan Prison, Good Grades Are Path to Freedom

Some inmates who get high marks could see their sentences commuted to non-custodial status More

'Rumble in the Jungle' Turns 40

'The Champ' knocked Foreman out to regain crown he had lost 7 years earlier when US government accused him of draft-dodging and boxing officials revoked his license More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisiai
X
Henry Ridgwell
October 30, 2014 11:39 PM
Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisia

Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Africa Tells its Story Through Fashion

In Africa, Fashion Week is a riot of colors, shapes, patterns and fabrics - against the backdrop of its ongoing struggle between nature and its fast-growing urban edge. How do these ideas translate into needle and thread? VOA’s Anita Powell visited this year’s Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Africa in Johannesburg to find out.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.

All About America

AppleAndroid