Environmental stakeholders on Tuesday listed measures to have better air quality in Nigeria, insisting that the fabrication of air quality sensors and development of air quality index, among other interventions, can ameliorate environmental issues.
They made the call in a communique jointly signed by Prof. Babatunde Rabiu, Director, Centre for Atmospheric Research(CAR) and Dr Olusegun Fawole of Portsmouth University, UK, at the just-concluded International Conference on COVID-19, Air Quality and Environment.
The conference held at the Osogbo campus of Osun State University, from Aug. 29 to Sept. 2. It was organised by CAR, an activity centre of the National Space Research and Development Agency (CAR-NASRDA), in collaboration with Osun State University and Penn State University, USA.
They recognised that air pollution is a trans-boundary global issue, while pollutants can travel incredible distances from the source.
“Pollutants exert negative effects in a far distant land, hence, Nigerians are admonished to strive towards a more responsible and sustainable living.
“There is an urgent need to encourage local fabrication of air quality sensors, such sensors would be better adapted to our climate, and such measurements would be more appropriate for the development of air quality models.
“There is an urgent need for Nigeria to develop its Air Quality Index, this would enable relevant agencies, particularly the Manufacturer Association of Nigeria to independently monitor and control the emissions from their factories.
“The general public should become aware and conscious of the quality of air around them, hence the need for air quality reporting to become a norm weather reports,” the stakeholders said.
Other recommendations include the need for the public to be sensitise on the benefit of waste separation, particularly in their homes.
The communique said that appropriate waste management practice can be carried out on the different categories of organic and inorganic wastes by the waste management authorities.
According to it, the air quality monitoring network over Nigeria should be densified, leading to the generation of a rich blend of original data needed for ambient air quality monitoring, model initialisation and evaluation.
“Deforestation should be discouraged, the general public should be encouraged to plant trees to enhance sequestration of atmospheric carbon.
“The general public should be sensitised on the need to take charge and responsibility of their carbon fingerprint, they should be educated on the need to partake in activities like carpooling, cycling, reuse, recycling, among others which would invariably lower their daily carbon fingerprint.
“Government parastatals should collaborate more with academic and research institutions, to help enrich research outputs necessary for policy making.
“Government agencies should work in synergy and with relevant stakeholders to promulgate, effectively communicate, and enforce environmental protection laws,” the communique said.
The communique further urged the National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency (NESREA), to augment emission permit fees that will effectively force manufacturers to consciously reduce their pollution.
It also recommended that state governments should be encouraged to set up and own air quality monitoring stations, especially in urban cities and pollution hotspots.
It said, “research into low cost alternatives to harmful technology and practices should be encouraged and funded.
“The relevant government agencies should be encouraged to make real-time air quality data readily available, preferably via mobile app and online media platforms for public use.
Today, the investors and strategic partners behind the pioneering brands in the safari industry announced the formation of a new umbrella company, called the Nawiri Group (www.NawiriGroup.com).
The group's goal is to consolidate its investments in responsible travel and connected impact initiatives in sub-Saharan Africa.
Nawiri Group has majority stakes in Asilia Africa (https://bit.ly/3wvft12), Go2Africa (https://bit.ly/3CARkdl), and technology developer Bazaruto (https://bit.ly/3coxhUP).
The travel organizations within the Nawiri Group, which collectively employ more than 1,000 staff in 4 African countries, share overlapping investors and support services, but will continue to operate as distinct brands in their own target markets.
Nawiri Group works closely with a variety of long-term focused non-profit partners and expert organizations in East Africa, including but not limited to Ahueni (https://bit.ly/3AN8hzT), Basecamp Explorer Foundation (https: //bit.ly /3RfjRcF), Carbon Tanzania (https://bit.ly/3KsxqDh), Honeyguide Foundation (https://bit.ly/3wrhueI), Kamitei Foundation (https://bit.ly/3wuX3xF) , Kenya Wildlife Trust (https://bit.ly/3wvg56W), Maa Trust (https://bit.ly/3CvoFX0), and Six Rivers Africa.
The formation of the Nawiri Group follows the earlier steps of these investors and companies during the COVID crisis to take a more integrated and partnership-based approach to business and create positive impact.
This includes itinerary booking technology and processes, service models, and close coordination with expert partners in an integrated agenda of long-term positive impact.
In essence, the group aims to bring together responsible tourism, local communities and conservation initiatives in a mutually supportive way.
Nawiri Group has an established presence and long-term commitments in some of Africa's most vital natural ecosystems.
This includes the Serengeti/Mara ecosystem and the larger Ruaha/Rungwa ecosystem, among others.
These ecosystems contain some of the greatest remaining biodiversity on the planet, meaning they are globally valuable, but also under serious threat.
Our partner communities in these wilderness areas are directly dependent on these natural ecosystems for their livelihoods and are therefore especially vulnerable to the impacts of climate change.
Recognizing this urgency, the long-term goal of the Nawiri Group, its investors and partners is simple yet ambitious: to create a prosperous and sustainable future for these vital ecosystems and the local communities that depend on them.
Jane Karuku, Chair of the Nawiri Group Board of Directors, comments: “This is a historic moment to achieve true impact at scale.
This combination of investment, vision and experience will ensure a genuine and sustainable impact.” Jane Karuku is joined by Helen Gichohi (PhD), as non-executive director and chair of the group's sustainability and impact monitoring committee.
"I joined Nawiri Group because this organization is committed to driving a holistic development model, understanding that nothing exists in isolation and that to be successful we need to invest in natural ecosystems, communities and technology."
Key long-term investors in the Nawiri Group, in addition to the co-founders, include institutional investors Norfund and LGT, as well as private impact investors Christian Sinding (CEO of EQT) and Reynir Indahl (CEO of Summa Equity).
Christian Sinding said: “We are proud and excited to be part of the formation of the Nawiri Group.
Along with our fellow impact investors, I have seen how important active collaboration is in addressing the key challenges experienced in these natural wilderness areas.
The opening this month of the Maasai Mara Wildlife Tourism College (WTC) in the Pardamat Conservation Area is the latest example of responsible tourism operators, local communities and NGOs successfully working together in the future in in which the natural ecosystems and the people who live in these both areas prosper”.
'Nawiri' is Kiswahili for 'flourish, prosper'.
The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has re-affirmed its commitment to ensuring continued sustenance of safe and secure flight operations in spite of challenges facing the aviation industry.The Director-General of NCAA, Capt. Musa Nuhu, made this known to aviation journalists at the Muritala Muhammed Airport (MMA), Lagos, on Friday.Nuhu promised that the regulatory agency would continue the implementation of its statutory responsibilities and duties to retain the confidence of the flying public.He said investigations were still ongoing into the operations of the suspended Dana Air and it would remain grounded until all the identified issues had been resolved, in compliance with Nigerian Civil Aviation Regulations (Nig.CARs) According to him, the detailed report of the two audits on DANA, shows the determination of the NCAA in ensuring that the safety of flights is foremost and overrides all other considerations.The director-general recalled that the NCAA had carried out a Financial and Economic Health Audit in addition to Technical Safety Audit of the airline.“The outcome of the two audit revealed a weak financial position and grave violations of Nig.CARs, which prompted the immediate suspension of the airline’s Air Transport License (ATL) and Air Operators Certificate (AOC).“However, I want to express dismay at some negative comments on the NCAA in some social media platforms based on interview that took place on a television network.“Almost the entirety of the comments during the interview were direct quotes of NCAA findings of the two audits.“The details of these investigations and proactive action showed the professionalism of the apex regulatory agency.” Nuhu urged industry experts to seek clarification from the NCAA to make informed and balanced comments because it was opened to informed criticisms geared toward improving the industry.The News Agency of Nigeria recalls that NCAA had in July, suspended the operations of Dana Air’s Transport License (ATL) and Air Operator Certificate (AOC) indefinitely.Nuhu in a statement said suspension was because of the outcome of a Financial and Economic Health Audit and a Technical Safety Audit carried out on the airline’s flight operations.According to NCAA, the airline was no longer in a position to meet its financial obligations and to conduct safe flight operations Nuhu had said that its action was made pursuant to Section 35(2), 3(b) and (4) of the Civil Aviation Act, 2006 and Part 188.8.131.52(a)(1) of the Nigeria Civil Aviation Regulations (Nig.CARs), 2015.NewsSourceCredit: NAN
The Merck Foundation (https://Merck-Foundation.com) and African First Ladies announced the call for applications for 2 new 2022 award categories for media, musicians, fashion designers, filmmakers, students, and potential new talent in these fields; Merck Foundation "More Than a Mother" Awards 2022 to address topics such as: Breaking the stigma of infertility, Supporting girls' education, Ending child marriage, Ending female genital mutilation, Stopping gender-based violence and /o Empowerment of women at all levels; Merck Foundation “Diabetes and Hypertension” Awards 2022 to promote a healthy lifestyle and raise awareness about the prevention and early detection of Diabetes and Hypertension.
The CEO of the Merck Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Merck KGaA Germany, acknowledged the congratulatory ceremony conducted by HE BRIGITTE TOUADERA, First Lady of Central Africa and Merck Foundation Ambassador "More than a Mother" and HE BAZOUM HADIZA MABROUK, First Lady of Central Africa.
Lady of Niger and Ambassador of "Educating Linda" to award the winners of the 2021 Merck Foundation Media Recognition Awards from their respective countries.
Senator Dr. Rasha Kelej, Executive Director of the Merck Foundation and President of the "More than a Mother" campaign, said: "I am grateful to my dear sisters HE BRIGITTE TOUADERA, the First Lady of the Central African Republic (CAR) and the Merck Foundation "More Than a Mother" and HE BAZOUM HADIZA MABROUK, First Lady of Niger and Ambassador of "Educating Linda", for leading the award ceremony and personally presenting the medals and certificates to the winners who became alumni of the Merck Foundation.
Once again, I congratulate the winner from CAR and Niger, respectively, and also appreciate all the efforts made by them to become the voice of the voiceless to raise awareness on sensitive social and cultural issues, such as the stigma of infertility.
, support for girls' education and also health problems such as adapting the best protection measures during the coronavirus, in the last year ".
The Merck Foundation, encouraged by the valuable contribution of the media, has further rewarded the winners by providing them with one year's access to an online educational training program called "MasterClass".
MasterClass is an immersive online experience and self-paced learning course that can be accessed from anywhere with the internet.
The Merck Foundation, in association with the First Lady of CAR, has awarded 5 scholarships to young local doctors in the fields of Oncology and Diabetes.
A female doctor completed the Merck Foundation Oncology Program and became the first gynecologic oncologist at CAR.
As part of its "Educating Linda" program, the Merck Foundation has also provided 3,000 sets of essential school supplies to girl students in the Central African Republic.
In addition, the Merck Foundation, in association with the First Lady of Niger, has awarded 25 scholarships to young doctors in the fields of Oncology, Fertility and Embryology, and Diabetes Care. Under its "Educating Linda" program, the Merck Foundation has also provided 3,000 sets of essential school supplies to girl students in Niger.
The winners from the Central African Republic in association with HE Madam BRIGITTE TOUADERA, the First Lady of the Central African Republic and Merck Foundation “More Than a Mother” Ambassador are: MERCK FOUNDATION “MORE THAN A MOTHER” MEDIA RECOGNITION AWARDS ” 2021 RADIO CATEGORY FIRST Position: Schella Claudicia Yemengali, Radio Centrafrique, CAR SECOND Position: Stephane Kokanzo, Radio Centrafrique, CAR MERCK FOUNDATION “MASK UP WITH CARE” MEDIA RECOGNITION AWARDS 2021 ONLINE CATEGORY FIRST Position: Arsène-Jonathan Mosseavo (https://bit.ly/3vTayHc) Winners from Niger in collaboration with HE Madam.
BAZOUM HADIZA MABROUK, The First Lady of Niger and Educating Linda Ambassador are: MERCK FOUNDATION MEDIA RECOGNITION “MORE THAN A MOTHER” AWARDS 2021 PRINT CATEGORY FIRST Position: Issa Moussa, Niger Times, NIGER ONLINE CATEGORY FIRST Position: Koami Agbetiafa, Niger Inter Hebdo, NIGER MERCK FOUNDATION “MASK UP WITH CARE” MEDIA RECOGNITION AWARDS 2021 FIRST IMPRESSION CATEGORY Position: Koami Agbetiafa, Niger Inter Hebdo, NIGER Senator Rasha Kelej further added: “In association with my dear sisters, the first ladies African, I am happy to announce the call for applications from media, musicians, fashion designers, filmmakers, students and potential new talent in these fields for two award categories.
You can share your work with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.” Award details: Merck Foundation Media Recognition "More than a mother" 2022 to address topics such as: Breaking the stigma of infertility, Supporting girls' education, Ending child marriage, Ending female genital mutilation, Stopping the gender violence and empowerment of women at all levels.
Merck Foundation Media Recognition "Diabetes and Hypertension" 2022 to promote a healthy lifestyle and raise awareness of the prevention and early detection of diabetes and hypertension Last Submission Date: October 30, 2022
Chinese and U.
S. scientists have proposed a new drug delivery system that can improve immune therapy treatment for brain cancer.
The researchers from Shandong University and the University of Wisconsin-Madison designed an injectable hydrogel that contains nanoparticles targeting the glioma stem cells.
Glioma stem cells are known to be the main culprits for the recurrence of glioblastoma, a highly invasive tumour in the brain, after surgical removal of the initial tumour.
Nanoparticles within the proposed hydrogel can create chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) macrophages in situ after being injected into the resection cavity.
According to the study published this week in the journal Science Translational Medicine.
The macrophage is a large cell that is able to remove harmful substances from the body and is found in blood and tissue.
Such modified macrophages can seek and engulf residual glioma stem cells in the cavity by stimulating an adaptive antitumor immune response, according to the study.
In a preclinical humanised mouse model, the drug delivery system was shown to prevent post-operative glioma relapse by inducing long-term antitumor immunity in mice.
Also, in combination with an antibody called CD47, the hydrogel increased the frequency of positive immune responding cells in rodents, according to the study.
The work offers a potential treatment strategy for priming cancer stem cell-specific immunity with broad application in patients suffering from recurrent malignancies and warrants further clinical study.
Prof. Jiang Xinyi, of the Shandong University, said in the paper’s co-corresponding author.
The Ministry of Aviation on Tuesday in Abuja said its priority was to ensure the safety and security of air passengers and cargoes.
Mr James Odaudu, the Special Assistant to the Minister of Aviation on Public Affairs, made this known in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria .
Odaudu said that the ministry and the agencies under its purview were working assiduously daily towards achieving the feat to boost confidence and integrity of the aviation sector in the country.
According to him, the Minister of Aviation, Sen. Hadi Sirika, has made safety and security of the flying public paramount since he assumed office.
“Right from the inception of the administration, the Minister of Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika has placed emphasis on safety and security of passengers and cargoes.
“This is why any noticeable safety concern is thoroughly investigated and handled appropriately, “ he said.
On Dana Air suspension, Odaudu said the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) had to suspend Dana Air licence as a result of noticeable safety and financial concerns.
According to him, the suspension is to enable NCAA carry out the necessary regulatory of ongoing audit.
“If at the end of the process, the Airline is found to be healthy, its services will resume.
“ NCAA has said in a statement recently that DANA Air suspension is made pursuant to Section 35(2), 3(b) and (4) of Civil Aviation Act, 2006 and Part 184.108.40.206(a) (1) of Nigeria Civil Aviation Regulations (Nig.CARs), 2015.“ On Aero Contractors suspension, he said that the airline`s scheduled passenger flights were self-imposed as a result of inability to meet operational costs occasioned by the high cost of aviation fuel.
The minister’s aide added that Aero was however still operating charter and helicopter services and carrying out its Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) services.
In a related development, Mr Mathew Pwajok, the Acting Managing Director, Nigerian Airspace Managing Agency (NAMA), however, told NAN that suspension of Dana Airline and Aero Contractors would have negative impact on national economy.
According to him, the downcast of the two airlines being currently handled by NCAA, a regulator for both economic oversight and airworthiness on the airlines, was a big concern to all relevant stakeholders in the industry.
“Anything that will affect the volume of flights is a negative to NAMA capability and revenue as NAMA does not manage empty airspace.
“In the absence of airlines, there is no Airspace Management Agency.
We will not have anything to manage.
So, it is of concern to us to ensure that the airlines are operating.
“ That is why we go about deploying latest facilities to upgrade our facilities to provide the service that is safe, secure, economical and efficient and cost effective to the airlines.
“That is to ensure that the airlines are doing well and stay in business and also keep us in business.
We don’t have business if there are no airline to manage, “ NAMA boss said.
Pwajok said the agency had recently intensified efforts to acquire sophisticated tools that were effective and efficient to reduce flight challenges in the Nigerian air space.
“On our own part, we have done a whole lot in terms of reducing flight time, fuel consumption for operator, and flight delays by automating most of our processes.
“ And by implementing satellite base navigation to reduce flight time for the airlines, by implementing total radar coverage network to ensure that aircraft are safe and secure.
“This will reduce operating cost for the airlines and also ensure that they are comfortable and they can continue in the business, “ he said.
The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has suspended Dana Airlines’ Air Transport Licence (ATL) and Air Operator Certificate (AOC) indefinitely, with effect from midnight of Wednesday, July 20, 2022.This is contained in a statement signed by Capt. Musa Nuhu, the Director General of NCAA, on Wednesday in Lagos.The statement said that the suspension was made pursuant to Section 35(2), 3(b) and (4) of the Civil Aviation Act, 2006 and Part 220.127.116.11(a)(1) of the Nigeria Civil Aviation Regulations (Nig.CARs), 2015.It said that the suspension order, handed down by Nuhu, has since been communicated to the management of Dana Airlines.According to statement, the decision is the outcome of a financial and economic health audit carried out on the Airline by the Authority, and the findings of an investigation conducted on the Airline’s flight operations recently.It said that these revealed that Dana Airlines was no longer in a position to meet its financial obligations and to conduct safe flight operations.“The NCAA acknowledges the negative effect this preemptive decision will have on the Airline’s passengers and the travelling public and seeks their understanding, as the safety of flight operations takes priority over all other considerations,” the statement said.The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Dana Air Boeing 737 aircraft with registration number (5N DNA) had on Tuesday made an emergency landing at Abuja Airport.The airline, after the incident, said that the aircraft had been grounded for immediate attention by engineers.The airline’s Communication Manager, Mr Kingsley Ezenwa made these known in a statement issued in Lagos.Ezenwa said that the incident was due to an indication on one of its engines.He noted that the Pilot-in-command briefed the passengers on the incident and landed the aircraft safely at the Abuja International airport at about 2.52 p.m. “All the 100 passengers disembarked safely and the aircraft has been grounded for immediate attention by our team of engineers.“The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) have also been briefed on the incident,” he had said.Ezenwa apologised to passengers on board the flight and reassured customers that the airline would continue to maintain high safety standards.The suspension of DANA Air operations also comes soon after the Airline Operators of Nigeria wrote to the NCAA and the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria expressing some concerns and seeking reliefs.NewsSourceCredit: NAN
The growing lack of fuel in the Central African Republic, exacerbated by the war in Ukraine, is worsening an already critical situation for the 3.1 million people in the country who urgently need humanitarian aid. In the past two months, fuel shortages have forced humanitarian organizations to slash operations while driving up food prices.
“In some of the worst affected areas of the country, such as Kaga-Bandoro province, we have only been able to buy 25% of the fuel needed this month, which prevents us from helping families in need for six consecutive days,” said Tchatat. Yakwa Godain Powel, Country Director of the Norwegian Council for Refugees in the Central African Republic. “Fuel shortages are adding crisis to crisis: it is vital for families dependent on aid to survive that fuel for humanitarian response is urgently supplied and meets operational needs.”
This fuel shortage means that some humanitarian flights within the country have been suspended or postponed, preventing aid workers from reaching people in need. According to the latest UN Humanitarian Air Service (UNHAS) schedule, flights from Bangui to Kaga Bandoro and Alindao have been reduced from three a week to once every two weeks. The entire humanitarian response is under threat of being drastically reduced, while 63 percent of the population is in need of humanitarian assistance and protection.
The food crisis is also affected. While 2.4 million people, half of the country's population, are currently acutely food insecure, food prices are rising due to the war in Ukraine, as neighboring countries on which the Central African Republic relies for the import of food and cereals depend on Ukraine and Russia to meet their needs. In recent months, the price of wheat flour in CAR has risen 50 percent. In June-July the price of meat will increase by 30% and the price of cassava by 50%, according to UN projections.
“Children get sick regularly, they are half the weight they should be. They don't get enough protein and they're all frail. We receive humanitarian aid but the amount of food they have given us is not enough to feed us. And with the price increase in the market, it is difficult for us,” said Mariam, a displaced mother in Alindao.
Combined, lack of fuel and high prices are driving up the cost of humanitarian operations, while the response only received 38.7 percent of the money required this year.
“The lack of fuel is pulling the rug out for us, while the lack of humanitarian funding prevents us from getting back on our feet. Donor countries need to consider price increases and ensure that the response can be scaled up to meet needs. If funding is not urgently increased, the impact of the war in Ukraine will continue to drag a country largely weakened by years of conflict into a downward spiral,” Powel said.
Facts and figures:In the last month, the supply of fuel for NRC operations has been reduced by 50% across the country. The water, sanitation and housing programs are the most affected since they are the ones that consume the most fuel due to the use of transport trucks. The price of a bag of cement reached $30, which is equivalent to a 50% increase over the average price ($20) before the outbreak of the Ukraine crisis. A baguette of bread that used to cost 125 CFA francs now sells for 175 CFA francs (+40%) (UNOCHA). There are more than 160,000 acutely malnourished children in the Central African Republic and two-thirds of them (103,930) do not receive any nutritional support due to underfunding and rising operating costs (UNOCHA).
A sharp rise in the prices of essential goods in the Central African Republic (CAR) linked to the war in Ukraine is likely to have a devastating impact on the already dire humanitarian situation there in the coming weeks, the World Food Program (WFP) said on Tuesday. ) from the ONU. .
Some 2.2 million people are already acutely food insecure in the Central African Republic, meaning that the global food, fuel and fertilizer crisis triggered by the Russian invasion of its neighbor on February 24 will put staple foods and basic goods "out of reach for many people," warned Tomson Phiri, a spokesman for the WFP.
“The figure may not surprise you, but when you look at the size of the population, it is almost half the population of the Central African Republic,” he told reporters in Geneva.
To help, the UN agency urgently needs $68.4 million. “Without immediate funding, food and nutrition insecurity will only increase for millions of people,” Mr. Phiri warned, adding that a sharp rise in commodity prices is only weeks away. “We expect a 30 percent increase in rice, a 67 percent increase in the price of wheat flour, and a staggering 70 percent increase in the price of vegetable oil.”
as bad as it gets
To put the Central African Republic's food insecurity crisis in context, the country is on par with Yemen, South Sudan, and Afghanistan, in terms of its proportion of people acutely food insecure.
Their problems stem from the prolonged internal armed conflict since 2012, which has caused thousands of deaths, caused massive displacement and left two out of three civilians dependent on humanitarian aid, amid fighting between the anti-balaka militia, mostly Christian, and the rebel coalition Séléka, mostly Muslim.
Just last month, the country's top UN official, Valentine Rugwabiza, told the Security Council that horrific attacks on civilians had increased, while efforts to chart a peaceful future for the country had fallen into a state of “de facto lethargy”.
The Special Representative of the Secretary-General for the Central African Republic was referring to the Central African Republic's adoption of its Joint Road Map for Peace in October 2021, which represented an attempt to implement a 2019 peace agreement, known as the Khartoum Agreement, signed between the Government and 14 non-state armed groups.
Structural factors have also contributed to a “creeping deterioration” of livelihoods and food security, such as high population growth, widespread poverty, unemployment, and natural resource degradation.
Although the country often experiences fuel shortages between May and July which corresponds to the start of the rainy season, this year CAR began to run out in mid-March. The impact on relief efforts by the UN agency and local populations is likely to be dramatic, leading to "an early hunger gap," he warned in a statement.
“In the back of our minds is also the impact that fuel, which is out of reach, high transportation costs, is having on our own operations,” said Mr. Phiri. “Now, because we're also struggling as an agency, what that means is our teams on the ground are making last-ditch efforts to put food in deficit areas. Now, the pre-positioning is when we move the food before the lean season and the rainy season that cuts off access to almost half of the country.”
UN World Food Programme (WFP) on Tuesday said the organisation would need 68.4 million dollars to address food insecurity in Central African Republic (CAR) because of sharp increase in essential goods.
According to WFP, a sharp increase in essential goods in CAR linked to war in Ukraine will likely have a devastating impact on the already dire humanitarian situation in coming weeks.
WFP spokesperson Tomson Phiri said some 2.2 million people were already acutely food insecure in the CAR.
Phiri said the global food, fuel and fertiliser crises sparked by the Russian invasion of its neighbour on Feb. 24, will put basic food commodities and staples “out of the reach of many people.
“The figure may not shock you out of your seats, but when you look at the population size, that’s nearly half the population of the Central African Republic,” he told journalists in Geneva.
To help, the UN agency needs 68.4 million dollars urgently.
“Without immediate funding, food and nutrition insecurity will only increase for millions of people.”
According to him, a sharp increase in commodity prices is only weeks away.
“We expect a 30 per cent increase in rice, a 67 per cent increase for the price of wheat flour and a staggering 70 per cent increase in the price of vegetable oil.”
To put CAR’s food insecurity crisis into context, the country is on a par with Yemen, South Sudan and Afghanistan, in terms of its proportion of acutely food insecure people.
In June, the senior UN official in the country, Valentine Rugwabiza, told the Security Council that horrific attacks against civilians had risen, while efforts to chart a peaceful future for the country had lapsed into a state of “de facto lethargy”.
The Secretary-General’s Special Representative for the Central African Republic was referring to CAR’s adoption of its Joint Road Map for Peace in October 2021, which represented an attempt to implement a 2019 peace agreement, known as the Khartoum Accord, signed between the Government and 14 non-State armed groups.
Structural factors have also contributed to a “progressive deterioration” of livelihoods and food security, such as high demographic growth, widespread poverty, unemployment and the degradation of natural resources.
Although the country often sees fuel shortages between May and July that correspond to the beginning of the rainy season, this year, CAR started running dry this year in mid-March.
The impact on the UN agency’s relief efforts and local populations will likely be dramatic and lead to “an early hunger gap.’’
“At the back of our minds as well, is the impact that fuel – which is out of reach – high transport costs, is having on our own operations.
“Now, because we are struggling as well as an agency, what that means is that our teams on the ground are making last-ditch efforts to preposition food into deficit areas.
“Now, prepositioning is when we move food in advance of the lean season and the rainy season which cuts access to nearly half the country,” Phiri added. (