18 million people at risk

Eighteen million people are threatened by food security in the Sahel over the next three months. This is the terrible observation made by the World Food Program (WHO) on Friday, May 20, during its weekly press conference in Geneva, Switzerland. This figure is the highest since 2014.

This crisis can be explained by several factors. It is first and foremost insecurity and the armed conflicts that have spread across the Sahel and then the Covid-19 pandemic, the drought or even rising food prices linked to the global situation.

The first victims of this crisis are still the most vulnerable sections of the population as children. WFP estimates that in the Sahel, more than seven and a half million children under the age of five are expected to suffer from malnutrition.

And the situation is all the more serious because the coffers of WFP, the leading humanitarian actor in the region, will soon be empty. The organization is facing “a serious lack of funds”, according to its spokesman, Thomson Phiri.

In Chad, for example, since June 2021, the WFP has been forced to halve the emergency rations for internally displaced persons and refugees. Without donor support, the organization risks interrupting its program.

Read also: West Africa and the Sahel are trying to mobilize funds to avoid starvation

The UN has already released $ 30 million from its Central Emergency Response Fund for Chad, Niger, Mali and Burkina Faso.

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