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US vows to keep helping S Sudan address food insecurity

Author: Emmanuel Akile | Published: Thursday, May 20, 2021

A vegetable stall at Konyo-konyo market in Juba - Courtesy

The US ambassador to the United Nations has reiterated her government’s commitment to continue assisting South Sudanese address their food crisis.

Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield says this is through supporting South Sudanese find solutions to food insecurity requirements in the future.

However, she did not mention how.

According to economists, food security can be achieved in future by fair trade, local food security reserves, agroecology, initiatives by and for small-scale farmers, less food wastage among others.

They say food security exists when all people at all times have physical, social and economic access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food to meet their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life.

The four pillars of food security are food availability, access to food, utilization and stability.

However, this can mostly be achieved when there stability and maintained security situation in the country.

In December last year, the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification estimates showed that between October and November last year, up to 6.5 million people in South Sudan faced severe acute food insecurity.

The number was projected to grow to 7.24 million between April and July this year.

It reported that the humanitarian conditions were dire in Pibor County, Akobo, Aweil South, Tonj East, Tonj North and Tonj South, where some communities were said to be experiencing high levels of acute malnutrition and even mortality.

Around 1.4 million children aged between 6 months and 5 years are also expected to be acutely malnourished in 2021 and will need life-saving treatment.

In an online press briefing from New York yesterday, the US ambassador to the United Nations said food insecurity can lead to conflict and conflict will lead to food insecurity, adding that the Joe Biden administration will continue to work with South Sudanese to ensure food insecurity is addressed in the country.

Linda said her country will continue to focus on the impact of manmade disasters on food and security because it is a very high priority for the US government.

The diplomat has also reiterated US government’s commitment to continue being a partner to South Sudan to confront its food security challenges.

US government is the biggest humanitarian donor to South Sudan.

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