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Zimbabweans in United States Mobilize to Help Fellow Emigres

Leaders of the Zimbabwean diaspora in the United States have mobilized to help the Zimbabwean émigrés of New Orleans and other parts of the U.S. region along the Gulf of Mexico whose lives have been upset by hurricane Katrina.

In Dallas, the president of the Association of Zimbabweans Based Abroad, Dumhapi Mema, said his organization is in contact with and assisting eight people. But he says he believes there may be many others who are reluctant to seek help because their immigration status is irregular and they want to avoid contact with authorities.

His organization has asked churches and other Zimbabweans in Dallas and elsewhere in the region to help by offering lodgings and donating funds for food and clothing.

Reporter Ndimyake Mwakalyele of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe spoke with Mr. Mema about the dilemma facing such Zimbabweans, many of whom are students.

In Washington, Zimbabwe’s ambassador to the United States, Dr. Simbi Mubako, says the embassy has been contacted by a number of Zimbabweans in dire straits.

Dr. Mubako told Ndimyake that his heart goes out to all the flood victims.

More reports from VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe...