The federal government claims that additional funding is required to help the nearly four million people in the northeast who are suffering from hunger and malnutrition.
In order to solve the food crisis in the area, the government and the UN appealed to foreign partners to provide financial assistance to Nigeria.
At the multi-sector plan 2023 lunch in Abuja, Sugra Mahamood, director of irrigated agriculture and crop development at the federal ministry of Agriculture and rural development (FMARD), gave a speech on the lean season food security and nutrition issue.
Mahamood claimed that many residents of Borno, Adamawa, and Yobe—collectively known as the bay states—are struggling with a nutritional crisis that is being exacerbated by the area’s security issues.
Humanitarian coordinator for Nigeria and UN resident Matthias Schmale discussed the effects of the food crisis and the necessity for quick action to avert the nutrition crisis in the region’s northeast.
According to Schmale, the insurgency in the area, which hindered food production, made the situation worse.
According to the 2023 cadre harmonize, almost 4.3 million individuals in the BAY states were at risk of going hungry to a great extent, according to Trond Jensen, chief of the UN Office of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).
“It is our collective responsibility to ensure that they have access to adequate and nutritious food to meet their basic needs,” NAN quoted Mahmood as saying.
“Our commitment is to mobilize funding and resources to urgently scale up our responses to the challenges at hand.”
Jensen predicted that between June and August, the crisis will worsen and that $1.3 billion was urgently required to sustain six million people in the northeast.
He added that an additional 2.8 million people living in would need food security and nutrition support, which would cost $396.1 million.
“More than half a million of these people will face emergency levels of food insecurity with extremely high acute malnutrition and cases of mortality predicted unless a rapid and significant scale-up of humanitarian assistance is undertaken,” Jensen said.
“Approximately, two million children under five years of age, across the three states, will be acutely malnourished in 2023, and this will put them at a greater risk of dying from common infections, causing developmental stagnation.”
According to Fred Kafeero, the FAO’s national representative, $40 million will be required to supply crop inputs for farmers in the northeast during the lean season of 2023.
Inputs for agriculture such as quick-maturing seed varieties, fertilizer, and livestock feeds, according to Kafeero, would promote local food production and stop the nutrition problem.
“Timeliness is a critical factor in food production as it is dictated by seasons, this is the time to invest before it gets too late,” he added.