An estimated 67,000 children in Sub-Saharan Africa region “are at risk of dying from extreme hunger” before the end of the year amid the COVID-19 restrictions, warned a charity organization.
“Data taken from The Lancet indicates that an average of 426 children per day are at risk of death unless urgent action is taken” in the region, Save the Children said in a report Tuesday.
Food insecurity, according to the report, has been a result of “a series of shocks this year in parts of the continent – from floods, locusts as well as soaring food prices to displacements”.
“The impact of COVID-19 has added to these factors, crippling economies and destroying livelihoods, rendering food and health services unaffordable or unavailable,” said Save the Children.
“Earlier this year it was estimated COVID-19 would drive up poverty in Sub-Sahara Africa by 23 percent,” it added.
Save the Children also referred to warnings that an estimated 433 million people across Africa will be undernourished by 2030.
“We’re already seeing more children arriving at our clinics everyday suffering from malnutrition, and we know that we’re only at the beginning,” Ian Vale, Regional Director for Save the Children in East and Southern Africa, was quoted as saying in the report.
“If we wait until clinics are full, it will be too late. The food crisis could kill tens of thousands of children unless they are reached with humanitarian assistance immediately. We cannot afford to wait,” Vale added.
The coronavirus pandemic has claimed more than 845,000 lives in 188 countries and regions since originating in Wuhan, China in December. The US, Brazil, India and Russia are currently the worst-hit countries.
Over 25.1 million COVID-19 cases have been reported worldwide, with recoveries exceeding 16.5 million, according to figures compiled by US-based Johns Hopkins University.
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