2 May 2015

Relief funds not received - Nepal

12:47 pm on 2 May 2015

Nepal's government says it has not received any of the money pledged by foreign donors after last Saturday's catastrophic earthquake.

Members of the Nepal Red Cross look at a damaged building in Kathmandu.

Members of the Nepal Red Cross examine a damaged building in Kathmandu. Photo: PALANI MOHAN / IFRC / AFP

Villagers living close to the epicentre have said they have not received any aid, nearly a week after the disaster.

The government is appealing for more helicopters, which are the only means of getting relief supplies to remote areas.

Nepal's Finance Minister Ram Sharan Mahat said the country had received some relief material but pledges by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and others had not come through.

"I tell you the truth - not a single dollar has been deposited to government accounts," he said.

"We have - as far as our Ministry of Finance is concerned - ADB has agreed formally to contribute $3 million to the government for relief purposes. Other donors have made pledges. It may take time."

Dr Mahat said Nepal would need at least $2 billion to rebuild homes, hospitals, government offices and historic buildings.

The New Zealand government has said it is donating $2 million to relief efforts.

More than 6200 people are now known to have been killed in the quake and following landslides and avalanches.

The disposal of bodies, which are still being found, is becoming a problem for authorities.

They say morgues are full beyond capacity and have ordered immediate cremations.

Government admits mistakes

Nepali officials have conceded they made mistakes in their initial response to the quake.

Nepal's Communication Minister Minendra Rijal said it was a disaster on an unprecedented scale.

He said there had been some weaknesses in managing the relief operation but the government would improve its efforts.

Villagers unload relief material from an Indian Army helicopter in the village of Kulgaun.

Villagers unload relief material from an Indian Army helicopter in the village of Kulgaun. Photo: AFP

Damaged houses can be seen from an Indian Army helicopter in Gorkha, Nepal.

Damaged houses can be seen from an Indian Army helicopter in Gorkha, Nepal. Photo: AFP

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