Over 22m Africans facing starvation due to El Nino – IGAD

Drought in kenya
Emaciated animals in drought-stricken Turkana County. Photo/Courtsey

Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) has said that about 22 million people around the Horn of Africa are facing starvation due to the effects of the recent El Nino rains.

Addressing the press, at the 43rd Great Horn of Africa Climate outlook forum held at Enashipai Spa in Naivasha, the director of Climate Prediction and Application Centre (ICPAC) at IGAD Dr Guleid Artan said the effects of the El Nino rains had led to the current humanitarian crisis, noting that some member countries recorded flooding while others experienced harsh weather conditions that affected millions of livelihoods.

Ethiopia was identified as the most affected country with 10.3 million people currently seeking urgent humanitarian assistance.

Other countries in need of support, according to the director, are Sudan, Eretria, Djibouti and parts of Somalia.

“Over 22 million people in the region require urgent food aid and the number could rise in the coming months as the long rains could lead to flooding,” he said.

Dr Artan noted that mitigation measures put in place by member countries before the El Nino rains helped save lives, adding that the effects of the rains had been minimised.

He also stated that countries in the North of Africa could be facing flooding following long rains that are about to begin in the region.

Story by Karanja Kimani. Additional writing by Ednah Wambui

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