There are, reports say, as many as four famines under way or pending. South Sudan, that most unfortunate of new countries where civil war and conflict with its northern neighbour and former controller, is one that is already unable to feed its people. Yemen and Somalia, countries where terrorism is embedded despite regimes trying to overcome it, are on the brink of famine. In North East Nigeria, the home of Boko Haram, the terrorist group, famine is just weeks away. Although not on the four most in crisis list is also facing severe food shortages: again, parts of Kenya have significant terrorism problems in the affected areas. The UN says it needs at least USD4,400m to prevent a major crisis in which 1 million people are heading for starvation in South Sudan alone. It says only 10% of that needed has arrived. But governments are right to be wary: if they hand out necessary supplies, are they also feeding terrorists?
It's not only food shortages that are causing problems: water shortages are also turning into crises.
In Shimla in Himachal Pradesh, India, water is officially available only on alternate days but locals report that it's often three or even four days between supplies. In Pakistan, the government has requested the provinces to delay the sowing of the critical Kharif planting season in which rice, sugar cane, cotton and corn are some vital crops. Much of the shortage is due to huge problems in the infrastructure which transports water to the regions.
In Southern Ghana, in the Koforidua region, water is in such short supply that residents are resorting to collecting and using gutter water. We'll not tell you what we've seen in the gutters even in the centre of Accra, the capital.
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