from MARCUS MUSHONGA in Harare, Zimbabwe
HARARE – HUNGER in Zimbabwe’s urban areas has increased over the past year with 2,4 million people now struggling to meet their basic food needs.
This is according to the Zimbabwe Vulnerability Assessment Committee (ZimVAC) report coordinated by the Food and Nutrition Council.
The lockdowns imposed to contain the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) have dealt a severe blow to the poor urban communities, many of whom were daily wage earners.
With work opportunities disappearing, the recent report states that 42 percent of urban households will not be able to meet their cereal requirements this year compared to approximately 30 percent for the same period in 2019
“Reduced access to nutritious food has resulted in negative impacts for many,” said World Food Programme (WFP) representative and country director, Francesca Erdelmann.
“Families will find it difficult to put food on the table, most of them have been stuck at home and were not able to go to work, the fortunate ones will skip meals while those without will have to go to bed with an empty stomachs.”
Erdelmann said for the most vulnerable people, hunger would have a lasting effect on their lives.
“The deteriorating hunger situation, caused by COVID19 threatens to be their biggest challenge.”
The Southern African country has suffered successive years of drought.
– CAJ News