Luanda, 16 October, 2019 / 9:21 am (ACI Africa).
As a severe drought continues to devastate regions of Angola, the Catholic Church in the country is asking the government to declare a state of emergency, according to Portuguese news agency Lusa.
On Monday, the Angolan government acknowledged a “severe water and grazing crisis” which has affected over 800,000 people in one southern province alone, the Associated Press reports.
Rainfall has been erratic in the southern African nation in the last year, creating what is believed to be the worst drought in at least 20 years.
In late April, UNICEF announced that 2.3 million people in Angola were experiencing a food security crisis due to the drought, including almost half a million children. The UNICEF report found that 2,500 children under age five were treated for severe malnutrition in the first quarter of 2019.
The government’s response to the situation has fallen far short of what is needed, due to lack of funding, UNICEF said.