Wednesday, 23rd of June, 2015, KATHMANDU
As soon as the government decided to disburse initial relief packages, the discussion on accountability began to gain momentum. Those with experience in other disaster situations predicted a high probability of resource misallocation to false victims, and media groups began reporting on this issue. The information collected by the Mobile Citizen Helpdesks confirms this fear. Our volunteers have seen an unbelievable increase in the number of households as families split to claim separate relief packages, as well as temporary migration into affected areas from other parts of the country. This is creating a huge problem in terms of equitable access to aid.
In recent news from the Mobile Citizen Helpdesk in Dhading, numerous fake victims have claimed and received primary relief in the amount of Rs. 15000 to buy zinc roofs. In Jiwanpur VDC, many people have migrated from Kathmandu, and although these people have families claiming assistance in this area, they are receiving separate aid packages. . Our volunteers observed this problem, and began to put pressure on local officers to do something about the issue. In conjunction with the local VDC secretary, these volunteers helped draft a list of names of those claiming false aid, and this list has been sent to District Disaster Rescue Committee under the complaint of "Fraud and Misuse of Resources." This issue is common across affected areas, but is largely unexplored and unreported. The Mobile Citizen Heldesks are committed to promoting accountability in post-quake response efforts, and will continue to check-in with citizens and monitor these instances of misconduct while we work together to rebuild Nepal.