The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) said on Wednesday an estimated 10.4 million children in eight countries, including Nigeria, may suffer from acute malnutrition in 2021.
The UNICEF, which disclosed this in a statement, said other affected countries are Republic of the Congo (DRC), Burkina Faso, Mali, Niger, Sudan, South Sudan, and Yemen.
The statement read: “As 2021 approaches, UNICEF is deeply concerned for the health and the well-being of 10.4 million children projected to suffer from acute malnutrition next year in those countries.”
According to the agency, ongoing insecurity in the DRC, socio-economic consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic and limited access to essential services will cause an estimated 3.3 million children under the age of five to suffer from acute malnutrition next year.
In Nigeria’s North-East, more than 800,000 children are expected to suffer from acute malnutrition, including almost 300,000 who are estimated to be at imminent risk of death.
UNICEF said the highest number of children since 2013 – some 1.4 million – will face acute malnutrition in South Sudan next year, due to ongoing conflict, insecurity, and limited health care, water and hygiene services.
In Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger, the number of malnourished children could increase by 21 percent to a staggering 2.9 million amid conflict, displacement and climate shocks in these Central Sahel countries.
UNICEF also warned that more than 2 million children already suffer from acute malnutrition in Yemen and the figure is expected to rise in 2021.
The agency had earlier appealed for more than $1 billion from donors to support nutrition programmes for children in fragile countries in 2021.
It also urged humanitarian actors and international donors to expand access and support for aid operations.
Join the conversation
INVESTIGATION… Ten years after, communities count losses as AfDB, Cross River govt abandon road project
Ten years after the Cross River State government and African Development Bank (AFDB) jointly awarded the Yahe-Wanokom-Wanikade-Benue border road for...
INVESTIGATION….N.3bn down the drain: Why water projects for Enugu communities don’t work
In this concluding part, ARINZE CHIJIOKE talks about some of the projects that are serving the people and how various WASH programmes have failed to tackle...
INVESTIGATION…PARKVIEW ESTATE: Exclusive images of how billionaire property developer incurred Lagos govt‘s anger
Many have seen the demolished building, but not many know the circumstances that led to the teardown of the about...
INVESTIGATION… N.3bn down the drain, as Enugu communities suffer from dry taps
In November 2020, three organizations and the Enugu State government celebrated the completion of N300 million worth of projects that were expected...
INVESTIGATION… How herdsmen crisis compounds woes of already deprived Ogun communities
Earlier in January, the Nigerian media space was awash with reports of violence between herders and farmers across the country....