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UN development chief pledges continued support for post-flood recovery in Pakistan

23 February 2011 – The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has promised to continue supporting the Government of Pakistan in its efforts to rebuild infrastructure and restore the social services and livelihoods destroyed by last year’s massive floods.

“With its long-standing and extensive presence in Pakistan and the financial support of a range of partners, UNDP will continue to help communities in the worst-affected areas to rebuild their lives, prioritizing needs identified by the communities themselves,” said Helen Clark, the UNDP Administrator, during a visit to Pakistan yesterday.

Ms. Clark had a meeting with Pakistan’s Prime Minister, Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani, in Islamabad during which they discussed how the UN system can best support the country in tackling its development challenges.

At an event to commemorate 20 years of the UNDP-commissioned Human Development Reports, founded by the late Pakistani economist Mahbub ul Haq, Ms. Clark said that his work helped profoundly change the way global development policies are framed and implemented, putting people at the very centre of development.

At a meeting with the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Hina Rabbani Khar, Ms. Clark stressed the UN’s desire to align its development support with Pakistan’s own priorities.

Ms. Clark also travelled to the southern province of Sindh, where she visited the city of Khairpur Nathan Shah and the village of Bagho Teweno in the Dadu district, where UNDP, with funding provided by the Government of Japan, is helping pump out stagnant flood water and clean up debris.

She also presented ownership certificates to women heads of households for their new disaster-proof and energy efficient homes.

“UNDP’s early recovery programme has so far mobilized $90 million of its $120 million target to support the Pakistani people’s recovery from this unprecedented disaster,” said Ms. Clark.

“While we work together with people and communities to build houses, repair roads and schools, it is also crucial to put in place systems which will reduce the impact of future disasters,” she added.

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