The President of the African Development Bank (AfDB) Group, Dr Akinwumi Adesina, says hunger has become a way of life in many African countries.
He stated this on the AfDB’s website saying Africa’s food systems are failing to deliver diets that are healthy, affordable, secure, and safe for vast swathes of its population.
“For many in Africa, persistent food shortages mean that they struggle to put food on the table — hunger has become a way of life.
“Almost 250 million men, women, and children across the continent go on an empty stomach from dawn to dusk.”
He called for the need to invest in sustainable, healthy diets to ensure the advancement of the health and well-being of Africans.
“For too long, African countries have failed to make the investments necessary to provide sustainable, healthy diets for their citizens. We cannot go on in this way. Better nutrition in African countries is the foundation to advance health and well-being, educational attainment, prosperity, and equity. It is time to deliver food security at scale and nourish Africa once and for all,” he said.
He also stressed the role of AfDB in ensuring food security and proper nutrition in Africa.
“We will not succeed unless we all play our part. Since the start of my first term as President of the African Development Bank Group in 2015, Feed Africa has been one of the bank’s ‘High five strategic priorities’.
“Over the past six years, almost 76 million people have benefited from agricultural technologies for food security through our Technologies for African Agricultural Transformation programme.
“Furthermore, Special Agro-Industrial Processing Zones, which are promoted by the African Development Bank in partnership with other institutions, provide world-class infrastructure to develop competitive value chains and transform rural areas into zones of prosperity. Seven SAPZs have been rolled out in Côte d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Guinea, Madagascar, Mali, Senegal, and Togo. SAPZs are planned for the Democratic Republic of Congo, Liberia, Kenya, Mauritius, Mozambique, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania, and Uganda. However, much more needs to be done, ”Adesina said.