SIERRA LEONE: Residents near Freetown short of food, medicine
ABIDJAN, 11 June 1999 (IRIN) - Residents of towns close to the capital, Freetown, are short of food and medicines, humanitarian sources in Freetown told IRIN on Friday.
A humanitarian assessment mission that went to Port Loko on Wednesday, some 70 km northeast of Freetown, via Masiaka and Rogberi Junction found malnourished residents, some of them in an acute condition.
“People have been depending on mangoes for food and now the season is coming to an end, they will have to rely on food found in the bush,” a source said. “They are also lacking basic medicines and commercial foods.”
The mission, led by the UN Humanitarian Assistance Coordination Unit (HACU), travelled through areas held by the government and Revolutionary United Front (RUF). “We were well received by the RUF,” the source said, “they showed a willingness to allow humanitarian agencies access and even invited us to travel on to Lunsar, some 30 km east of Port Loko.”
Following the initial assessment, the humanitarian agencies will now make of list of urgent humanitarian needs and actions to be taken. The mission led by HACU, included representatives from the World Food Programme, Children’s Aid Direct, CARE, the Sierra Leone Red Cross and the UN Observer Mission in Sierra Leone.
Health & Nutrition,
[This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations]