The President of Senegal, President Leopold Senghor said on Saturday (July 21) there's not been enough international help for the drought stricken countries of Africa.
The President of Senegal, President Leopold Senghor said on Saturday (July 21) there's not been enough international help for the drought stricken countries of Africa. He said he'd had less than a fifth of the grain he'd asked for from developed countries to meet the shortage in his country -- he had received by the end of June only 31,000 tons of the 160,000 tons requested. He said he hoped to get 100,000 tons by the end of October. The President, addressing the second congress of the National Council of the Senegalese Progressive Union in Dakar, said the President of the World Bank, Mr. Robert McNamara, had told him he would be establishing a long-term plan to assist the West Saharan States.
The worst drought for sixty years is affecting the countries at the southern end of the Sahara Desert; and, although there've been reports of rain beginning to fall, the need for aid is great.
The drought has been affecting the area for seven years and the Southern Sahara Desert has been advancing by 50 miles a year, swallowing up once-fertile land. Yields of maize, rice and millet are half what they were, and this year Mali, which used to produce 400,000 tons of grain a year, has not grown any.
Help for the area has come from or been promised by, the United Nations, the United States, the European Economic Community, Canada and the Soviet Union, among others. On the dockside at Dakar 28,000 tons of grain, sent by the United States has been stockpiled.
The city of Dakar itself, is still receiving tourists; many of them form France on 'luxury package holidays'. And the port at Dakar, besides receiving the shipments of grain, has continued it more traditional activity as a fishing port.