No fewer than 9.2 million people faced increased levels of hunger and food insecurity in Nigeria between March and May, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has declared.
According to the food agency, the rising food insecurity rate was a result of the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, climate change impact and armed conflicts in the northern part of the country.
In a statement released on Monday, the FAO stated that the insecurity challenges in the northeast, followed by forced displacement, contributed largely to the spate of hunger in the country.
It noted that as the attacks were more intensive, it forced a lot of farmers into oblivion, affecting millions of people who depended on the production from the region.
The FAO further revealed that an estimated 3.2 million of those affected by food insecurity were domicile in Adamawa, Borno and Yobe states.
The food agency warned, “This figure is expected to increase to over 12.8 million people, of whom 4.4 million are in the three northeastern states, during June–August 2021, unless resilience-focused and humanitarian actions are taken.
“Increased violence and forced displacement continue to affect the humanitarian situation in northeastern Nigeria – the key hotspot of the armed conflict in the country – that has been further aggravated by trade disruptions and an economic decline linked to the effects of COVID-19.
“With the deterioration of the food security situation and an increased risk of famine in areas of Borno state, providing agricultural inputs to the most vulnerable households in time for the planting season starting in June is crucial to quickly increase food availability and access.”
The FAO further warned that unless proper actions are taken, millions of Nigerians are expected to suffer as some of them are threatened by famine.
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