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Covid to Climate Change Leave Africans Hungry and Unhealthy

  • Pandemic’s economic fallout is driving food shortages
  • Higher food, fuel prices crimp spending on nutritious meals
Customers purchase fresh produce at the Adjame vegetable market in Abidjan, Ivory Coast.

Customers purchase fresh produce at the Adjame vegetable market in Abidjan, Ivory Coast.

Photographer: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/Bloomberg
Updated on

The economic fallout from the Covid-19 pandemic, combined with conflict and climate shocks, is driving hunger to unprecedented levels, with African leaders warning it’s raising health risks and cutting access to care.

“Food security is the beginning of health security,” Ahmed Ogwell Ouma, the deputy director of the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, said at a virtual briefing on Thursday. “When our populations don’t have good nutrition, by and large it means their immunity is reduced and they’re able to get infected by different types of diseases much more easily.”