Nigeria, three other countries may face famine in 2017 – Report

farmland

Due to persistent conflict, severe drought and economic instability, Nigeria and three other countries face a credible risk of famine in 2017, a report has said.

In a report released Wednesday, the Famine Early Warning System Network, FEWS NET, an agency supported by the United States Agency for International Development, USAID, said the Boko Haram crisis continues to contribute to large scale population displacement, limit market activity, and restrict normal livelihoods.

The agency disclosed further that the combined magnitude, severity, and geographic scope of anticipated emergency food assistance needs during 2017 is unprecedented in recent decades, adding that an estimate of 70 million people across 45 countries will require emergency food
assistance this year.

“Food insecurity during 2017 will be driven primarily by three factors. Most importantly, persistent conflict is disrupting livelihoods, limiting trade, and restricting humanitarian access across many regions, including the Lake Chad Basin, the Central African Republic, Sudan, South Sudan, the Great Lakes Region, Somalia, Yemen, Ukraine, Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan,” the report stated.

“A second important driver is drought, especially those driven by the 2015/16 El Nino and the 2016/17 La Nina. In Southern Africa and the Horn of Africa, significantly below-average rainfall has sharply reduced crop harvests and severely limited the availability of water and pasture for livestock. In Central Asia, snowfall to date has also been below average, potentially limiting the water available for irrigated agriculture during 2017.

“Finally, economic instability, related to conflict, a decline in foreign reserves due to low global commodity prices, and associated currency depreciation have contributed to very high staple food prices in Nigeria, Malawi, Mozambique, South Sudan, and Yemen.”

According to the report, given the reduced capacity to cope and the possibility that additional shocks will occur, Nigeria and three other countries face a credible risk of Famine (IPC Phase 5). The three other countries are Somalia, South Sudan, and Yemen.

In addition to the sheer size of the food insecure population, the report stated that a persistent lack of access to adequate food and income over the past three years has left households in the worst-affected countries with little ability to manage future shocks.

In north-east Nigeria, the region most affected by the Boko Haram crisis, the reports says evidence suggests that famine occurred in 2016 and could be ongoing.

The report however noted that in order to save lives, continued efforts to resolve conflict and improve humanitarian access are essential.

It added that in addition, given the scale of anticipated need, donors and implementing partners should allocate available financial and human resources to those areas where the most severe food insecurity is likely.

The report comes two months after the presidency warned Nigerians of a likelihood of famine of the excess export of Nigerian grains is not checked.

‎”Huge demand for our grains in the global market is creating an excellent environment for the mindless export of Nigerian food across our borders and unless this is curtailed, Nigerian markets will be bereft of grains by January next year,” presidential spokesperson Garba Shehu‎ said in November.

He said the Ministry of Agriculture advised the president to call the attention of all Nigerians to the issue which, if not addressed promptly, could lead to a shortage of grains in the country.


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  • Arabakpura

    This is a serious issue for somebody already suffering from hernia to also suffer distended stomach!

    • Erico333

      EDITOR SIR,

      Premium Times doesn’t know the real meaning of PATRIOTISM

      How can BUHARI’s forecast of plentiful harvest just
      become famine all of a sudden? Don’t you people in Premium Times know that when
      Buhari’s forecast of plentiful harvest turns into famine it brings disgrace to President
      Buhari and makes him look like an ignorant person who has no good judgment, no
      knowledge, and, no sense of analysis?

      Premium Times doesn’t know the real meaning of PATRIOTISM. If it knows it,
      Premium Times will support everything that President Buhari is doing. Even if
      international people show any other evidence to suggest that President Buhari
      does not know what he’s saying or doing Premium Times will not publish that
      contrary evidence, but only publish what President Buhari is saying.

      That is the meaning
      of PATRIOTISM. Like here, President Buhari told the world media at the
      United Nations conference that there will be too much food in Nigeria this year
      that that our stomach will burst because he has heard from Nigerian farmers
      that there will be plentiful harvest this year because of too much rain falling.
      President Buhari even said the same thing to President Obama last year.

      • Impulse400

        Premium Times does not need to report everything that President Buhari says, like other reporters do, because they are not REPEATERS.

        They are Journalists, and this is Journalism, baby. Not blind Patriotism. Don’t hate the player, hate the GAME.

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  • Powerlessconscious

    Rubbish. External organisation will be giving analysis about nigeria. I think United Nation and three other organisations may face famine.

    • Eluba Inas

      Lol. You just made my day.

  • ilubarde

    This is an outdated report even though it was released yesterday, Wednesday, January 25, 2017. Let us critically examine the said report.
    The report identifies 3 drivers of the anticipated famine:

    1. Persistent conflict; and
    The major conflict in Nigeria was the Boko Haram. The fighters have largely been dislodged from their hideouts. They no longer pose serious threats. But, even at the heights of their brigandage, they did not threaten Nigeria’s food-producing capacity as to cause famine. Moreover, the conflict was only in one of the 6 political zones in Nigeria.2.Severe drought

    2.Severe drought
    There has been no drought in Nigeria

    3. Economic instability.
    No doubt, Nigeria’s foreign exchange earnings have markedly decline in line with the fall in petroleum prices but this is not enough to mark it as economic instability. How would you describe Venezuela?

    In light of the above, It is safe to ignore this report.

    Garba Shehu report of famine in Nigeria was definitive as to its timing.

    ”Huge demand for our grains in the global market is creating an
    excellent environment for the mindless export of Nigerian food across
    our borders and unless this is curtailed, Nigerian markets will be
    bereft of grains by January next year,” presidential spokesperson Garba
    Shehu‎ said in November.

    In the next 5 days, January 2017 would become history and so also would Garba Shehu’s unscientific prediction of famine in Nigeria!!!

  • Otile

    I hate this kind of report, the report does not do us any good over here in the Niger Delta. If they continue to say it loud Buhari may send Buratai to invade our people accusing the youths of blowing more pipelines to starve the North.