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Abyei's displaced allege malpractice in aid distribution.

July 12, 2012 (AGOK) - Displaced persons from Abyei who depend on aid on Thursday expressed disappointment about the way the relief food is being handled.

Food aid distribution in Abyei (UN)

Many of the displaced who spoke to Sudan Tribunein Agok onThursdayexpressed the need for the local authorities and humanitarian agencies to improve distribution mechanisms. Returnees have claimed that local officials employed by local administration relief agencies in registration and distribution of food manipulate and cut the share of beneficiaries andsell it in the market. "Some people have more ration cards which makes them get more food. They buy the extra ration cards from other returnees who have gone," claimed a resident of the area who identified herself as Achol Baak. "Some of us are pregnant while others are sick and elderly but no one cares about our condition. [...] We walk from very far distances, for almost two hours to a distribution site but when we reach the site, we spend more than 10 hours in a long queue and we get back home hungry and exhausted," Achol claimed. Awaal Deng Bol, a mother of four children in Agok, said that each family should receive a food ration - including soya corn blend, beans and cooking oil -- three times a month; amounting to about 2,100 calories per person per day. "The biggest challenge comes from the food distribution. People do not get the right amount of food... That is why almost all the people complain about food shortages. Food gets finished before the next cycle of food distribution and people stay hungry for about five days or borrow from their neighbours." She suggested that agencies constantly monitor the situation and incerease resources where neccessary. She was also critical of the health services currently availbale in the area. The large crowds on food distribution days are controlled by local officials which some people accuse of excessive violence. "Some returnees go back to their homes with nothing after spending hours waiting," claimed an anonymous resident. She requested aid agencies control the crowds rather than leave it to local officials Acting Chief Administrator, Kuol Monyluak, denied receiving reports of the manipulation of aid but pledged to launch an investigation into the matter. However, he conceeded that there have been issues with queue length, which have now been resolved as "we askedrelief workers involved in food distribution to be identifying elderly people, breastfeeding and pregnant mothers and give thempriority," Monyluak explained. (ST)

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Publication:Sudan Tribune (Sudan)
Date:Jul 13, 2012
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