from SAAD MUSE in Mogadishu, Somalia
MOGADISHU, (CAJ News) – NON-governmental organisations (NGOs) have called on donors to save millions of people on the verge of starvation in East Africa.
Over 14 million people across Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia – about half of them children – are under threat of starvation.
The number will rise to 20 million by the middle of 2022 if the rains continue to fail, food prices continue to rise and significant funds are not secured to meet the needs of those in crisis.
The COVID-19 pandemic, conflict, desert locusts and now a further surge in food and commodity prices due to the conflict in Ukraine are compounding the drought.
As many as 11 million people would remain highly food insecure in drought-affected areas through September 2022 even with above-average rains.
Over 50 NGOs and NGO networks have called for urgent and substantial intervention by donors.
“We cannot repeat the mistakes of the past and leave it until it’s too late,” said Kurt Tjossem, Vice President for International Rescue Committee for East Africa.
The envoy said donor governments had proven effective at mobilizing attention and resources for other humanitarian crises around the world.
“Today, that leadership is woefully absent in the Horn of Africa,” Tjossem said.
The crisis has evoked memories of the drought and famine that claimed the lives of over 250 000 people in Somalia in 2011.
Humanitarian partners have requested more than US$4,4 billion in funding to provide life-saving aid and protection to approximately 29,1 million people in Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia in 2022.
“The clock is ticking. We must act quickly and wisely by increasing investments to strengthen communities’ resilience to future shocks,” said Sean Granville-Ross, Mercy Corps director for Africa.
– CAJ News