, ROME, Jan 3 – The new head of the Food and Agriculture Organisation, Jose Graziano da Silva, will visit the drought and famine-hit Horn of Africa this month, he said on Tuesday.
“Africa remains the priority of my mandate. I will travel to the African Union summit at the end of January, as well as the Horn of Africa,” he told the first press conference of his mandate.
Nations in the Horn of Africa – mainly Somalia, Djibouti, Ethiopia and Kenya – are facing one of the worst droughts in more than half a century, which has caused malnutrition and food shortages.
“FAO is needed especially in poor countries that cannot eradicate hunger on their own,” Graziano da Silvia said.
The UN’s food agency has described the situation in the Horn of Africa as “inadmissible”, and has called several times on the international community to not only give emergency aid but support long-term investments in sustainable agriculture.