Monday, October 30, 2006

UN Criticizes rich nations for failing Africa on food aid

"...A United Nations agency has criticised rich nations for failing to meet pledges for financial assistance as it warned that millions of people in southern Africa face food shortages.

Some 4.3 million people in southern Africa will now have to go without the aid earmarked by the World Food Programme (WFP), which blamed a £30 million gap in funds for the cuts, reports Reuters.

The cutbacks will affect mother and child nutrition centres, school feeding projects and schemes targeting HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis patients, for whom nutrition is key in boosting immunity to diseases that have ravaged the region.
Around 1.4 million people were found to be in "critical need" of food aid in Zimbabwe, where the WFP said it had already been forced in October to scale back help to about half of the 900,000 people in need.

The food deficits in troubled Zimbabwe have been blamed by critics on drought and an exodus of the country's most productive commercial white farmers who fled the government's controversial land reform programme...

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