FAO SOFI REPORT MEDIA REACTION –A BROKEN FOOD SYSTEM PERPETUATING HUNGER

Wednesday, July 6, 2022

The Food and Agriculture Organisation of United Nation’s just launched “State of Food Insecurity and Nutrition in the World 2022” report, stating that as many as 828 million people were hungry in 2021, an increase of 150 million since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It is deeply concerning that global hunger has been spiraling since 2019, and is now at such devastating levels around the world. This is happening not just because of a shortage of food alone, but rather as a consequence of broken food systems, supply chain disruptions occasioned by conflicts and effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, and  worsening climate change” says Dr. Vincent Ahonsi, Oxfam International’s Country Director

“In Nigeria, pockets of droughts and conflicts are either making farming difficult, or forcing arable lands to be abandoned with food prices drastically going up, preventing the poorest from access to food. Many people are being forced to skip meals, sell livestock or land, take out loans, and withdraw their children from school, with the girls most often the first. With more than 27 million people currently suffering from hunger in the West African region and another 11 million facing the possibility of going hungry, there cannot be a more perfect hunger storm,” said Dr. Ahonsi.

“To save lives, rich donor governments must honor their promised funding pledges. To date, less than 20% of the $3.8bn UN appeal for the Central Sahel and the Lake Chad Basin has been funded. Governments must stop making empty promises or creating more bureaucratic processes. Instead, they need to invest in small-scale food producers and food workers. They need to repurpose our global agriculture and food system to better serve the health of people, our planet, and our economies,” said Dr. Ahonsi.

We must put our money where our mouth is. Western governments should free up resources through progressive tax including taxing billionaires – in order to invest in diverse, local sustainable food production that helps countries to become less dependent on food imports; and support smallholder food producers, especially women.”

West African leaders need to do more to facilitate non-violent, non-conflict dispute resolution.

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Notes to editors: 

To date, only 17% of the total UN appeal for Central Sahel (Niger, Mali, Burkina Faso) and the Lake Chad Basin (Niger, Nigeria, Chad, Cameroon) has been funded. Source: the 2022 Humanitarian response plans (HRPs)in West and Central Africa as of 04 July 2022.

 

To date, only $979 million of the total $6.96bn UN appeal for Somalia, Kenya, Ethiopia and South Sudan (both HRP and FA) has been funded. This is a gap of 86%. Source: UN OCHA Appeals and response plans 2022 | Financial Tracking Service (unocha.org)

 

Figures on food billionaires wealth is from Oxfam’s report “Profiting from Pain”, published 23 May 2022.

Contact information: 

Rita Abiodun | rita.abiodun@oxfam.org | + 08089721663

For more information about Oxfam and its work in Nigeria, visit www.nigeria.oxfam.org.

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