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One year on, quake victims still living in tents

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KATHMANDU — One year after 7.6 magnitude quake struck Nepal, an expected four million individuals are still living in sub-standard makeshift havens that pose a threat to their health and well-being.

On the commemoration of its worst natural disaster in living memory, the country is still in crisis.

The earthquake that killed almost 9,000 people and over 22,302 people were injured, a significant number of the people who lost their homes are still living in tents and under tarps.

More than 800,000 homes were damaged or destroyed in the earthquake and providing shelter remains the paramount humanitarian priority.

But despite achievements in many areas of earthquake recovery efforts, little progress has been made so far towards helping survivors rebuild permanent homes.

“Living under plastic shelters was never intended as a permanent solution,” said Dev Ratna Dhakwa, secretary general of Nepal Red Cross Society. “Our aim is to restore the dignity of survivors who have endured massive personal loss. To do this, they need to be reassured that they will have the security of a real home in near future.”

Several earthquake victims have had no Government help by any means.

Of the $4 billion pledged by international donors in rebuilding help, just $1 billion has been committed to rebuilding efforts.

The Government promised 200,000 Nepalese Rupees to each earthquake victim — but there was a catch.

The government could not appoint a chief to its National Reconstruction Authority (NRA) until December, with various political parties wasting eight months bickering over which of them would be represented in the top job.

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NRNA Third Africa Regional Meeting from Dec 29

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KATHMANDU— The Third Africa Regional Meeting of Non-Resident Nepali Association ( NRNA) will be held in Kampala, the capital of Uganda on December 29-30.

‘Development experiences exchange’ is the theme for the meeting this year where African experts and Nepali experts living in Africa will exchange experiences of development activities of African countries.

On the occasion, the predicaments facing Nepali workers in African countries will also be shared.

The meeting would be attended by representatives from the National Coordination Council, International Coordination Council of 17 different countries of Africa as well as other countries in other continents.

Nepali artists together with the African ones will show cultural performances during the meeting. According to the National Coordination Council, Uganda a seminar of Nepali language and literature will be held on the sidelines of the meeting.

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