The World Bank Group President Jim Yong-Kim on Thursday announced the bank was working toward raising 1.6 billion dollars to build social protection systems to end food insecurity in sub-Saharan Africa and Yemen.
In a statement by the Head of Communications, World Bank Nigeria in Abuja, Olufunke Olufon, Yong-Kim said about 20 million people in Nigeria, South Sudan, Somalia and Yemen were on the “tipping point” of famine.
“We at the World Bank Group stand in solidarity with the people now threatened by famine.“We are mobilising an immediate response for Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan, and Yemen. Our first priority is to work with partners to make sure that families have access to food and water,” he said.
We at the World Bank Group stand in solidarity with the people now threatened by famine. We are mobilising an immediate response for Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan, and Yemen.
He noted that the bank was working towards a financial package of more than $1.6 billion to build social protection systems.Strengthen economic reliance, and maintain service delivery to the most vulnerable.
Yong-Kim said he was also working with the bank’s board of directors to secure the approval of new operations amounting to $770 million funded substantially through the International Development Assçociation (IDA) Crisis response Window.
“The World Bank Group will help respond to the immediate needs of the current famine, but we must recognise that famine will have lasting impacts on people’s health, ability to learn and earn a living,” he said.
Famine was officially declared on February 20 in South Sudan, impacting approximately 100,000 people.
United Nations says there is a credible risk of famines in Yemen, Northeast Nigeria, and other countries.
The UN estimates that about 20 million people in Nigeria, South Sudan, Somalia and Yemen are affected.
Drought conditions also extend to Uganda and parts of Tanzania. The last famine was declared in 2011 in Somalia during which 260,000 people died.