Australia provides $3 million to address Nigeria famine

From EMEKA OKONKWO in Abuja, Nigeria,
ABUJA, (CAJ News) – AUSTRALIA has contributed AU$3 million (US$2,2million) to provide food and nutritional assistance to millions of famished people in northeastern Nigeria.
The Boko Haram insurgency and the current lean season have intensified hunger in the region.The funding will support World Food Programme assistance to nearly 111 000 people, including specialized nutritional food for some 47 000 pregnant and nursing women.It comes as an estimated 5,2 million people face intense hunger during the period between harvests. Experts believe as many as 50 000 people are experiencing famine-like conditions in the region.Ronald Sibanda, WFP representative and interim Nigeria Director, expressed gratitude to Australia’s continuous support to families in northeastern Nigeria.
“This contribution is timely as it will help us reach the most vulnerable at a critical period of the year,” said Sibanda.
With the most recent contribution, the Australian Government has provided a total of AU$15,7 million over the past year for WFP’s humanitarian response in northeastern Nigeria and the broader Lake Chad region.
Australian High Commissioner in Nigeria, Paul Lehmann, said the scale of the humanitarian situation in the region demanded an action-oriented response.
“The Australian government is proud to be working with our long-standing partner, WFP, to offer an important contribution to the combined efforts aimed at relieving the suffering of the communities most affected,” Lehmann said.
– CAJ News

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