These 5 Sub-Saharan African countries face grave hunger challenges in 2020

A villager uses a wheelbarrow to collect a monthly food ration provided by the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) in Masvingo, Zimbabwe, January 25, 2016. REUTERS/Philimon Bulawayo
  • UN food relief agency says millions of people in Sub-Saharan Africa will face grave hunger challenges this year.
  • According to the UN World Food Programme (WFP), the countries include Zimbabwe, South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and the Central Sahel region.
  • In Nigeria, nearly 3 million people in Adamawa, Borno, and Yobe states are struggling to meet their food needs.

With the dawn of a new decade, millions of people in Sub-Saharan Africa will face grave hunger challenges, requiring life-saving food assistance, according to the UN World Food Programme (WFP).

The countries include Zimbabwe, South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and the Central Sahel region, all needing immediate attention, given the urgent needs of children, women, and men.

According to the WFP's 2020 Global Hotspots Report, titled, “Potential flashpoints to look out for in New Year,” the level of hunger in these regions will stretch the UN food relief agency’s capacity to the limit and require generous donor support for a ramped-up humanitarian response.

On WFP’s analysis, Sub-Saharan Africa dominates with the need for immediate attention.

David Beasley, Executive Director at WFP, said, “WFP is fighting big and complex humanitarian battles on several fronts at the start of 2020.

“In some countries, we are seeing conflict and instability combine with climate extremes to force people from their homes, farms, and places of work.

“In others, climate shocks are occurring alongside economic collapse and leaving millions on the brink of destitution and hunger,” Beasley elaborated.

An upsurge in violence in Nigeria's northeast has displaced many and cut out access to farmlands. According to the report, nearly 3 million people in Adamawa, Borno, and Yobe states are struggling to meet their food needs. WFP projects that this figure could rise to more than 3.8 million people by mid-year.

The UN food relief agency estimates it will require more than $10 billion to fully fund all its operations in more than 80 countries around the world.

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