AFRICA/NIGERIA - Lack of food: nutritional emergency

Wednesday, 7 December 2016 hunger  


Maiduguri (Agenzia Fides) - The crisis in the state of Borno has reached alarming levels, with at least 500,000 people displaced or isolated in enclaves outside the capital, Maiduguri. They are deprived of means of survival, farmers can no longer work the land, the trade routes in areas controlled by Boko Haram have been closed and markets emptied. Last June, the Nigerian government finally declared the nutritional emergency in the State, recognizing the importance of this humanitarian crisis. But people continue to die of hunger.
Children under the age of five have virtually disappeared. The lack of food has led to unprecedented rates of malnutrition and levels of mortality well beyond the emergency threshold. The alarm was launched by Doctors Without Borders after the recent visit to the Country of the international president of the NGO, who calls for urgent and massive increase of humanitarian interventions in order to provide food and medical care to the people.
The statement sent to Agenzia Fides says that in two of the 11 refugee camps in the city of Maiduguri, from May to October, up to 50% of children under 5 suffered from acute malnutrition. Simultaneously, infant mortality rates are very high: 5 children out of 10 thousand die each day in Muna Garage camp and 8 out of 10 thousand in Custom House, respectively, 2.5 and 4 times the emergency threshold. In terms of vaccination, only 50% of children between 9 months and 5 years of age received coverage against measles in Custom House and less than 30% in Muna Garage. (AP) (Agenzia Fides 07/12/2016)