The UN has approved an emergency loan of 22 million U.S. dollars to scale up its activities in drought-hit regions of Somalia.

food aid
food aid
The Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) will release the funds to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) to increase livelihoods support to rural communities affected by repeated drought.

“FAO’s action aims to increase rural livelihood support and restore food production, while ensuring that families meet their immediate food and water needs,” FAO said in a statement issued on Tuesday evening.

CERF complements the loans already provided by FAO’s Special Fund for Emergency and Rehabilitation Activities.

“This effort is part of the international response to prevent another famine in Somalia five years after the previous one devastated the country,” it said.

Across Somalia, 6.2 million people will face acute food insecurity through June. Of them, nearly 3 million are facing Crisis (Phase 3) and Emergency (Phase 4) of the five-phase International Phase Classification for Food Security (IPC)

Stephen O’Brien, head of the UN’s Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), Under-Secretary-General and Emergency Relief Coordinator, said he was releasing the loan from CERF to FAO “as part of the efforts to avert a humanitarian catastrophe in Somalia.”

O’Brien said over 2.9 million people are at risk of famine and many will predictably die from hunger if the world does not act now.

Most of the 6.2 million people facing acute food insecurity live in Somalia’s rural areas where hunger levels have spiked primarily due to losses in crop and livestock production and other sources of food and income caused by repeated droughts. Enditem

Source: Xinhua/NewsGhana.com.gh