Lilongwe (Agenzia Fides) - More than 12 million people are at risk of hunger in southern Africa as reported by FAO (the UN food agency), due to drought caused by El Niño, a natural phenomenon originated by the warming waters of the South Pacific that affect the climate in most of the world.
The most affected Countries are Angola, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Swaziland, Zimbabwe and Madagascar.
From Malawi the dramatic testimony of Fr. Piergiorgio Gamba, a Monfortan missionary to Agenzia Fides. "We have always been poor – say the people, but we have never experienced lack of food like this year" says Fr. Gamba.
The missionary reports that the serious food shortage is having very serious social consequences. "If it is hard to live poverty in a decent manner, what we are experiencing this year has never happened: eg hunting for people with albinism because according to the beliefs of witchcraft to own an albino body part means becoming rich immediately. There was a father who sold his nine year old son for a little over a thousand euro".
"The government has also increased fiscal pressure to the point of even taxing school books, notebooks which are cut in half to make them last longer and to share them with other students", concludes the missionary. (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides 05/08/2016)