Appeal for help for Myanmar

The reclusive Myanmar authorities are slowly revealing the horrifying extent of the destruction caused by the Tropical Cyclone Nargis, which hit the country over the weekend.

The latest reports were that 22,500 Myanmarese people have perished, with 10,000 dead in one city alone. 41,000 others are still missing and at least 25,000 homes have been lost.

Relief organisation World Vision estimates that over 2 million people have been hit by the effects of the cyclone. James Tumbuan, World Vision’s National Director in Yangon said, “Yangon totally collapsed. Getting drinking water is a real problem.”

Tumbuan said thousands of people are now camped in government schools in and around Yangon.

The Singapore Government has pledged US$200,000 for relief efforts in Myanmar.

I’m sure much more will be needed. I’d encourage those of us with the means to help out too. In these situations, the best way to help is to donate money to reputable aid organisations who are able to reach the victims, both during the immediate aftermath as well as during the reconstruction phases.

World Vision is one such charity which I regularly donate to. Donations can be made via credit card, Internet banking or cheque. Please click here for more details.


Author: Gerald Giam

Gerald Giam is the Member of Parliament for Aljunied GRC. He is a member of the Workers' Party of Singapore. The opinions expressed on this page are his alone.

5 thoughts on “Appeal for help for Myanmar”

  1. It is sad and utterly disgraceful that the junta has withheld many much-needed foreign aid initiatives due to their self-serving interests in the name of “politics”. A gov’t is supposed to be there for the best interests of its people. This tragedy has once again exposed the generals’ lack of basic decency and conscience, and a wanton disregard for the well-being of their own citizens.

    I feel sorry for the Burmese people.


  2. calamari – I share your disgust. But this is entirely in character for the junta.

    Their only concern is their own survival and benefit. To heck with their suffering people. Their brutality and failed economic policies have over the past 46 years have probably killed way more than 100,000 people, so these cyclone deaths are probably a drop in an ocean for their blood-stained hands.

    They know the consequence of opening up to aid, especially from the US and Europe. Once you open up, it’s hard to shut it completely after.

    Amidst all the terrible suffering caused by the cyclone, I hope that this will be a turning point in the history of this troubled country.

    The clearest indication that the Myanmarese people have had enough with the junta would be a ‘No’ vote at this weekend’s Constitutional referendum. That is, of course, if those who are suffering are even able to vote. Aung San Suu Kyi has called for the vote to be postponed, but it fell on deaf ears.

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