4.3m Nigerians Facing Severe Hunger In Northeast – UN Official

A United Nation’s humanitarian official in Nigeria, Mr Matthias Schmale, has revealed  that severe hunger is affecting at least, 4.3 million people in some states in Nigeria, such as Borno, Adamawa and Yobe.

Schmale disclosed this to journalists in Geneva on Wednesday that the number of children under five at risk of life-threatening severe acute malnutrition had doubled in one year to reach 700,000.

Describing the situation in northeast Nigeria, Schmale said: “I have been to Borno and the other two states several times.

READ MORE: Nigeria Ranked Among Countries With Highest Poverty, Pollution

“I’ve seen mothers fighting for lives of their malnourished children in nutrition stabilisation centres.

“Those of us who are parents must imagine what it’s like when you cannot ensure your children have enough to eat,” he said.

Schmale  also added that the “catastrophic” situation is primarily the result of more than a decade of insecurity linked to non-State armed groups, which prevents people from farming and earning income from the land.

INFORMATION NIGERIA reports that another harmful factor affecting these parts of the country is climate change and extreme weather impacts.

Last year saw the worst floods in 10 years in Nigeria, which affected more than 4.4 million people across the country, not just the north-east.

However, hike in prices of food, fuel subsidy removal and fertilisers have exacerbated the crisis, and the response remains severely underfunded.

The UN official said that, out of the $1.3 billion in humanitarian funding needed for the region, only 25 per cent has been secured so far.

Recall that INFORMATION NIGERIA had earlier reported that Nigeria, India, and the Democratic Republic of Congo topped the list of countries with the highest poverty and pollution exposure.

This was disclosed by the World Bank, in a new report titled, ‘Detox Development: Repurposing Environmentally Harmful Subsidies’.

According to the report, it was stated that trillions of dollars are wasted on subsidies for agriculture, fishing and fossil fuels that could be used to help address climate change.

The report added that there are about 716 million poor people in areas with unsafe levels of air pollution.