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Submitted by Pen on
Food crisis is a common and recurring crisis in Eastern Africa. In the current food crisis, more than 12 million people are estimated to be in need of humanitarian assistance in the Horn of Africa, according to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian affairs (OCHA). All countries in the Horn of Africa – Somalia, Ethiopia, Kenya and Djibouti- are affected, with Somalia being the worst hit, where half of the country’s population has been severely affected by the crises. In Somalia, food scarcity, acute malnutrition and crude mortality rates led the United Nations to declare state of famine in July 2011. Famine was also declared in Mogadishu in August this year. All other southern regions are in regions of humanitarian emergency which is the stage before famine and are at a risk of entering into famine because of various factors including expectation of below normal rains and limited access to humanitarian organisations. Famine is not the result of soaring prices alone in Horn of Africa, man-made factors and weather conditions contributed equally. In my opinion the human actions exacerbated the situation more than any other factor. For example, Somalia has experienced several years of civil war and has been without a central government since 1991, other factors such as displacement, civil unrest, piracy and instability have contributed to the dire situation. These famine hilted nations in Africa need development aids and not just the relief funds. The relief funds are mainly targeting the short term goals of the crises. It is important to find long term and permanent solutions of the problem by providing aids for development. But unfortunately, the relief assistance itself is so insufficient to resolve the crises on urgent basis, so how it can be expected that multi-billion development fund can be raised to device a permanent solution. Time to think.