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Critics Slam Oprah and Dwayne Johnson’s Maui Wildfire Fund

*Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Oprah Winfrey have launched a recovery fund for those affected by the Maui wildfires. 

In a video posted on Instagram Thursday, the pair announced that they donated $10 million to get the campaign off the ground. They are also calling on the public to donate to the effort. 

“As we have seen firsthand, the impacts of these wildfires have been devastating, and we’re here to ensure with 100% guarantee that your donations will go directly into the hands of Lahaina residents,” Winfrey and Johnson said, UPI News reports. 

The relief fund aims to provide “direct relief” to those affected by the recent wildfires in Maui, Hawaii. 

“Every adult resident who lives in the affected area and was displaced by the wildfires in Lahaina and Kula is eligible to receive $1200 per month to help them through this period of recovery,” Winfrey and Johnson said in the news release. 

 

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According to the media, about 115 people were killed in the wildfires (locals on Twitter claim it’s more), over 100 residents are missing, and 6,000 are displaced, Yahoo reports. 

Many have criticized Oprah’s land ownership on the island and the irony of two very wealthy celebrities asking for donations to help those impacted by the disaster.

“This is sooo ironic… a billionaire and a millionaire asking YOU to donate YOUR money??,”  one person commented on Oprah and The Rock’s IG post. 

Another added, “Hey Oprah-why was your house completely untouched? Weird..”

A third person commented, “What a JOKE! Both should be embarrassed to actually post this. How sad. I’m so glad people are waking up too truth.”

“Why would a billionaire and a multi millionaire asking hundrednaires for money ,” another IG user wrote. 

“You’ve got to be kidding. You’re worth $2 billion. Why don’t you give back to YOUR community? Funny how your house didn’t burn down,” wrote another critic. 

Waiola Church fire (Matthew Thayer-The Maui News via AP)
Waiola Church fire (Matthew Thayer-The Maui News via AP)

On Instagram, Winfrey, who owns more than 2,000 acres of land in Maui, promised to “make a major donation” to help the island recover. She reportedly purchased 870 of those acres earlier this year. The media mogul has lived in Maui “part-time for more than 15 years“. 

“I know a lot of people out there … are just having a hard time trusting where the money goes,” said Johnson, who is of Polynesian descent.  “The fund that we created … is a clean direct from you, directly to their hands, and right away with some real immediacy, because as we’re finding — that you guys around the world know — with disasters like this, the No. 1 need is money.”

Johnson also posted on Instagram about the wildfires that struck the island last month.

“I’m completely heartbroken over this, and I know that all of you are too,” said Johnson. “Everything that I’ve seen transpire over these past couple of days, everything that continues to transpire, hour-by-hour, minute-by-minute, it’s all heartbreaking.”

READ MORE: Oprah Winfrey and Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson Launch Maui Relief Fund | Video

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