UN seeks $306 million to combat food insecurity in North-East Nigeria

The United Nations (UN) plans to raise $306 million as part of efforts to combat food insecurity in North-East Nigeria, where millions are projected to face severe food crisis during the lean season from June to October.

Mr. Mohamed Fall, UN Resident Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria, officially launched the plan in Abuja on Tuesday, stating that the UN goal is to gather resources to address food insecurity and malnutrition crisis in Borno, Adamawa, and Yobe.

Fall referenced the results from the March 2024 Cadre Harmonisé analysis, which projected that at least 32 million people across 26 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) will face a food crisis from June to August 2024. He noted that this figure, compared to the 26 million from the previous year, represents one of the highest totals of food-insecure people worldwide.

He stated, “In Nigeria, a combination of factors contributes to the rising food insecurity, key among such are conflict and insecurity in the northern and north-central states.”

“Economic hardship and inflation also impacted negatively on people’s ability to procure staple foods, such as beans and maize, which have gone up between 300% and 400% in the past 12 months.

“The impact of climate change continues to be felt. As the 2024 rainy season starts coinciding with the lean season, we must double our efforts and race against time to save lives. We are launching the 2024 Food Security and Nutrition crisis multisector plan for BAY based on results of the Government-led Cadre Harmoniséanalysis.”

“This indicates 4.8 million people in the three states will face acute food insecurity during the lean season. The plan seeks $306 million to mitigate the worst impact of the lean season.”

He clarified that the organization aims to assist 2.8 million out of the 4.8 million severely food-insecure individuals over the next six months, focusing primarily on children, pregnant women, lactating mothers, and other vulnerable groups.

FG commends the food security plan

The Minister of Budget and Planning, Atiku Bagudu, represented by Mrs. Clementina Okoro, Head of Food and Nutrition in the ministry, expressed concerns over how drought significantly impacted the 2023 harvest in Yobe and Borno.

He praised the international community’s partnership in implementing the plan, emphasizing that it would enhance humanitarian assistance across the three states.

He described the plan as multi-sectoral and integrated, noting that food and nutrition alone are insufficient for the survival of vulnerable groups, especially children who also require clean water, health support, protection, and other services.

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