Nearly two million people staring at starvation in Madagascar

By: RIVONALA RAZAFISON

Nearly 1.8 million people in Madagascar are food insecure, officials say.

The UN and local officials said at a press conference on Thursday that those affected represented 46 per cent of the island nation’s population. They were in eight of Madagascar’s 22 regions.

“Of the affected groups, 450,000 individuals were facing severe food insecurity,” said the government.

The highest rates of food insecurity were registered in three southern regions — Androy, Anosy and Atsimo Andrefana.

About 380,000 residents — nearly 30 per cent of the regional population — were experiencing food shortages.

The precarious food situation was being attributed to a significant decrease of annual yields over the last three years.

“Persistent droughts have resulted in huge upheavals in agricultural activities,” the experts observed.

Households had reportedly resorted to faulty survival strategies, including selling off production tools and livestock.

The affected population were also said to depend on wild drought resistant plants — which were abundant in the affected areas.

SOURCE: DAILY NATION