The number of people facing severe food shortages is set to increase as the impact of drought, along with high food and fuel prices, continues to grip the Horn of Africa region, FAO warned today.
High levels of acute malnutrition are widespread and more than 8 million people in Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia are in need of emergency assistance.
The region has now experienced two consecutive seasons of significantly below-average rainfall, resulting in failed crop production, depletion of grazing resources and significant livestock mortality.
Read more here: Drought in Horn of Africa threatens millions | ReliefWeb.
Despite the driest year in the Eastern Horn of Africa in more than 15 years, and the threat to the livelihoods of millions in the region, funding for relief efforts is barely over 50 per cent of announced needs, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said today. According to an OCHA report, “2011 is the driest period in the Eastern Horn of Africa since 1995 [and] drought remains a major threat with no likelihood of improvement until early 2012.”
OCHA said the number of people “in acute livelihood crisis,” which the agency estimates at about 8.8 million at present, is expected to increase in the coming months, and overall food security conditions will continue to deteriorate.
“Against the approximately $1.293 billion in humanitarian requirements identified by the governments and humanitarian country teams in Djibouti, Kenya, Ethiopia and Somalia, some $671 million in contributions has been recorded to date, meaning emergency appeals throughout the region are funded at 51 per sent,” OCHA said.
The agency said funding gaps have been reported in all major sectors, including nutrition, water and sanitation, and livelihoods.