Food aid will be cut for more than a million hungry Nigerians aff ected by Boko Haram’s insurgency if promised funding from the international community doesn’t arrive, according to a United Nations offi cial. Peter Lundberg, the deputy UN humanitarian co-ordinator in Nigeria, wrote in the French newspaper Le Monde that just 15% of the UN aid appeal for one of the world’s worst humanitarian crises has been received.
Over the next six months, $242m is needed to help 1.8 million people, he said. “Without suffi cient fi nancing, the World Food Programme will have to reduce its vital support,” he wrote Friday. A half-million children in northeast Nigeria are suff ering from severe malnutrition, Lundberg said.
“Without treatment, one in fi ve will die,” he said. Nigeria is part of what the UN has called the largest humanitarian crisis since the world body was founded in 1945, with more than 20 million people in four countries facing possible famine.
Th e other nations are South Sudan, Somalia and Yemen. Lundberg said the UN has appealed for $1bn in aid for Nigeria this year where an estimated 4.7 million people in the northeast are in urgent need of food aid. Nigeria’s military has been fi ghting to win back areas that have been under the control of the Boko Haram extremist group. T
h e years-long Islamic insurgency in the vast northeast has disrupted both markets and farming, creating the hunger crisis.