By Adelola Amihere
The Cadre Hamonise Analysis of acute food insecurity situations carried out in 17 northern states across the country by Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has revealed that about 4.02million people in Nigeria are currently faced with acute food insecurity
The report which covered 17 states namely Jigawa, Kano, Kastina, Kaduna, Bauchi, Benue, Borno, Gombe, Niger, Kebbi, Taraba, Yobe, Zamfara, Adamawa, Plateau, Sokoto and the FCT indicated that over 4million Nigerians would be in the food crisis phase or worse of, through October-December 2019 just as it also projected that about 5.94million people in Nigeria May be in food crisis phase or worse between June-August 2020.
Speaking during the communication and debriefing of results of the October 2019 Cadre Harmonise Analysis Outcome for 17 states including the FCT yesterday in Abuja, FAO country representative, Suffyan Koroma however observed that despite the disturbing figures, there has been significant improvement in the food security situation in the country.
According to him, food insecurity in the Boko Haram ravaged Borno, Yobe and Adamawa states has significantly reduced from 5.2million in June‒August 2017 to 2.9million June‒August 2019.
“The improvement has largely been due to the efforts of government and massive intervention of the humanitarian communities, without which the situation would have worsened. FAO will continue to work with her partners in the provision of livelihood assistance to the vulnerable group identified through this process,” he pointed out
The report further revealed that food consumption rate is at minimal phase in 15 out 16 states and the FCT also showed a high prevalence of acute malnutrition in Adamawa (7.2percent), Borno 8.1percent , Yobe 11.5 per cent, with central Yobe currently having the highest rate of malnutrition at13.9percent.
He therefore stressed the need for the government to not only sustain the conduct of CH analysis but also put in place measures to institutionalize the CH process as part of the early warning system in the country.
Earlier in his welcome address, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Mohammed Umar reiterated that attaining food and nutrition security remain the cardinal objective of the government and as such the ministry remain resolute in supporting initiative geared towards attaining this mandate.
He said “the ministry is hopeful that the information articulated from this cycle would remain relevant informing government and stakeholders’ decision particularly on the undermining factors driving acute food and nutrition insecurity situation during the current projected period and provide a possible recommendation to ameliorate these challenges.”