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Recurrent drought and locust outbreaks continue to impact smallholder farmers with agriculture-based livelihoods, making them vulnerable to food insecurity and undernutrition.

While nearly 70% of the Namibian population depends on agriculture, the 021 Integrated Food Security Phase Classification report indicated that 26% of Namibia's population faces acute food insecurity.

30% of the population faced acute food insecurity during the period from December 2021 to March 2022. 

Food insecurity was mainly attributed to drought and locust outbreaks in 2020 across 10 regions.

This has seen over 2,600 hectares of crop and at least 734,000 hectares of grazing land ravaged.

Efforts to control locust outbreaks have also seen funding gaps, further worsening an already fragile food and nutrition insecurity situation. 

The Japanese government, through its supplementary budget, has funded the "emergency response to enhance resilience and mitigate climate-induced impacts on livelihoods, food, and nutrition security of the most vulnerable households in Namibia" project to the tune of over N$14 million.

The project, to be implemented in Kavango East, Kavango West, and Ohangwena regions by the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture, Water, and Land Reform and Regional Councils, aims to strengthen national food security data and information generation, analysis, and monitoring to support decision-making.

Since 2013, the government of Japan has supported Namibia through UN agencies by funding about 24 projects with a total value of around N$340 million.

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NBC Digital News

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Celma Ndhikwa