Sukkur : Pakistan’s foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari has informed diplomats of over 20 countries and representatives of donor organizations that Sindh urgently needs Rs860 billion to reconstruct collapsed houses, repair roads and revive agriculture destroyed by unrelenting heavy rains that pounded the province for several weeks.
Bhutto-Zardari said, “We have to rehabilitate people, give them jobs, reconstruct road network and strengthen economy.’ He added that they would also need machinery to restore fertility of inundated farmland after the floodwaters receded.
Mr Zardari addressed the guests at a meeting he chaired at the airport on Wednesday to brief them about the scope of devastation caused by the torrential rains and flood in Sindh and other provinces. He was welcomed by Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah and Federal Minister for Water Resources Syed Khursheed Ahmed Shah.
It had rained more than usual in Sindh, he claimed, despite the fact that the torrential rain and flooding had devastated nearly the entire country.
According to Bhutto-Zardari, at present, drainage system was not working due to high flood at Guddu and Sukkur barrages.
He said, “This is the first flood which has inundated both riverain areas and the urban centers at the same time, rendering large populations homeless. The rain and flood had destroyed crops and caused loss of Rs33.5,441 million to growers in the province.”
The National Disaster Manager Authority (NDMA) officers also briefed the delegation about the damage from the catastrophe.
Ambassadors and diplomats from Turkmenistan, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Azerbaijan, Germany, Canada, Spain, South Korea, China, European Union, France, Iran, Turkiye, Qatar, and other countries were included in the delegation, along with representatives from USAID, the United Nations Children’s Fund, the International Organization of Migration, and other organizations.
All of the guests took an aerial view of the flooded cities, towns, crops, and canals after the meeting.