| 20 April 2024, Saturday |

Child malnutrition expected to quadruple in Southern Madagascar

The number of acutely malnourished children is likely to “increase fourfold” since the previous assessment conducted last October, including 110,000 in severe condition whose growth and development will suffer “irreversible damage”, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the UN World Food Programme (WFP) said in a joint statement.

“What is currently happening in southern Madagascar is heart-breaking”, said WFP Representative Moumini Ouedraogo. “We cannot turn our backs on these children whose lives are at stake”.

Four consecutive years of drought have wiped out harvests and cut off access to food.

More than 1.14 million people are food insecure in southern Madagascar and the number of people categorized as surviving in phase 5 ‘catastrophic’ conditions, risks doubling to 28,000 by October, the agencies said.

And with the lean season – the time of year when food stocks run low – around the corner, the crisis is forecasted to “drastically worsen”.

‘’We need to double our efforts to curb this catastrophic rise in hunger, but we cannot do it without significant funding resources and buy in from partners”, underscored Mr. Ouedraogo.

  • NNA