The Daily Telegraph
East Africa emergency
SIR – Why must 37 million people on the brink of famine wait while the international community procrastinates over the fastdeteriorating humanitarian emergency in East Africa?
We are calling on the new Prime Minister urgently to step up the British response. During the worst drought in 40 years, people are taking desperate measures to survive failed harvests, livestock deaths, water shortages and extreme hunger. Every day more lives are lost. Yet the British Government has been missing in action.
The humanitarian response in Somalia, Ethiopia, Kenya and South Sudan must address the symptoms and the underlying causes. The climate crisis has been a major factor in five successive failed rainy seasons. Rocketing food prices are in part due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and to Africa’s reliance on imports. The food system is broken, and we must act now to avoid further deaths.
As faith-based international development organisations, we are moved to act out of compassion and solidarity. Through the generosity of many thousands of supporters, we are doing all we can to help communities in the region. However, local institutions, from faith-based groups to voluntary networks, are overwhelmed and under-resourced. It is time to ratchet up humanitarian assistance and restore the 0.7 per cent aid budget, ensuring that funds reach local NGOS working with vulnerable communities.
The Prime Minister has a responsibility to work with Britain’s international partners to break the cycle of catastrophic food insecurity in East Africa.
Chief Executive, World Jewish Relief
Chief Executive Officer, Christian Aid
Chief Executive Officer, World Vision UK
UK Director, Islamic Relief Worldwide