Stories tagged: famine

East Africa Community Sectoral Council Meeting: Tackling Food Security in the Horn of Africa

East Africa’s agricultural ministers are currently taking part in a week-long Sectoral Council meeting (from August 15-19) in Arusha, Tanzania to discuss the full implementation of the East Africa Community (EAC) Food Security Action Plan (2011-2015).

The EAC Food Security Action Plan has recently been developed, and agreed to by East African heads of states, to address food security in the region. The EAC is now working with member states to implement the food security action plan.

Nyamajeje Weggoro, Economics Director of the EAC, said:

“We are mobilizing and urging the countries to take measures within the context of those instruments and other measures that have already agreed upon long time before this problem.”

It is hoped that this Action Plan will enable the region not only to address the current food security crisis, but also to deal with any future crises. It will be implemented over a period of five years – the first being crucial strategic interventions.

Nyamajeje Weggoro continued:

“The Sectoral Council is being held at a time when the region is facing serious drought and food insecurity. The meeting will comprehensively discuss the full implementation of the plan, so that now we can not only address the current situation, but also be able to prepare ourselves for future occurrences.”

This meeting takes place as the Horn of Africa experiences a severe food crisis caused by the worst drought in 60 years. This crisis is spread across Somali, Ethiopia and Kenya, with more than 11 million people in need of food aid. The UN has officially declared famine in two parts of Somalia, and says that it expects famine to reach all regions of southern Somalia in coming weeks as food prices rise and the dry season approaches.

The last meeting of the Sectoral Council on Agriculture and Food Security was held on 2 December 2009.